Off-Road Utility Vehicles Recalled Due To Rollover Accidents
A number of vehicles have been the subject of recalls recently; most notably, Textron Specialized Vehicles and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a call of close to 1,100 older model “Bad Boy” off-road utility vehicles after two rollover incidents, one involving a 14-year-old who died, and another driver who suffered severe personal injuries. The recall specifically includes all Bad Boy XTO and Bone Collector XTO vehicles manufactured in the United States and sold between November 2010 and June 2013.
The accidents have been linked to the vehicles specifically lacking seatbelts, which is an obvious and, arguably, negligent oversight. The vehicles are designed to not only carry the driver, but also three other passengers, all without seatbelts. As stated by the CPSC, all vehicles like these lacking seatbelts pose a risk of serious injury or death in the event of an accident.
A History of Problems
This isn’t the first sign of danger associated with these types of vehicles: For many, they have become a significant source of liability due to the injuries—and deaths—that they sometimes cause. Many of the accidents stemmed from rollovers, whereby drivers and passengers were flung or fell from the vehicle and then smashed by it. Some of the most gruesome injuries suffered included crushed legs, arms, and heads, as well as various amputated limbs. And these were off-road vehicles that included seatbelts. As a result, years ago, hundreds of lawsuits were filed against one manufacturer (Yamaha), which decided to settle some of the cases pending.
Regulations & Rollover Risks
Some of these vehicles are known as what’s called “side-by-side” vehicles, meaning that they are not subject to any particular government standards. Conversely, ATVs are ridden like (and thus governed more as) motorcycles. Conversely, the off-road utility vehicles have been described more as “jeep-like,” with seating for several individuals and steering wheels.
According to some engineers, rollover risk for these vehicles can be calculated based on the vehicle’s track width and the height of its center of gravity, and many have turned out to be unreasonably high. Rollovers have occurred without drivers doing anything terribly risky; simply driving over relatively flat ground at moderate speeds; even at dealerships when driving them around the parking lot or on test drives; none driving as aggressively as TV ads often arguably encourage. In fact, riders lost limbs simply driving 10-20 miles per hour on flat ground when they either went to make a turn or hit a rock or bump in the road.
Fort Lauderdale Personal Injury Lawyers
Florida lawyer Lee Friedland brings years of experience to the legal representation of injury victims in Fort Lauderdale—those who are seeking justice due to the negligence or wrongful conduct of another. If you or a loved one has been injured on an off-road utility vehicle or due to any other negligent oversight that involved an accident, contact us today for a free legal consultation and we’ll discuss your options.