Rollovers most likely on undivided highways
Apr 10, 2007 4:09 PM
Although many tank truck safety managers may think that the majority of rollovers occur on highway ramps, they learned recently that 10 percent or less actually happen in those instances, according to information presented at the National Tank Truck Carriers Safety Seminar April 4-5 in San Antonio.
Doug Pape of Battelle said the majority of rollovers take place on undivided highways while speeding is involved about half the time. About 75 percent are the result of driver error.
At the same time, drivers' motivations for safety appear to be more determining in avoiding rollovers than driving skills, he said.
The information comes from a cargo tank trailer rollover study Battelle is conducting and is expected to be completed soon. The Department of Transportation also has reported that that 23 percent of all cargo tanks crashes involve rollovers, and the number increases to 75 percent when the cargo tank truck is negotiating a turn.
Pape said that a 12 percent reduction in rollovers can be expected if trailers are built with lower center of gravities, about three inches. That margin allows for a three miles-per-hour edge in speed before an overturn--a significant difference, he said.
Vehicle stability equipment is another way to guard against rollovers, he said, advising managers to compare the various products on the market.
However, he added, "There is no one solution to the rollover problem."
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