Overloading your vehicle is dangerous and is something you should avoid at all times.
Every passenger should always have their own seat and use their own seat belt, no matter the type of vehicle. One Florida family learned the overloading lesson the hard way over the holiday weekend.
Two adults and eleven children were taken to hospitals following an accident on I-95. The family was traveling in a Jeep Liberty when the accident occurred. The vehicle began to lose control after its rear tire blew out, sending the vehicle into the right shoulder where it overturned. Out of the 13 passengers, only the two adults and three children, ages ranging from 3 to 14, were wearing seat belts.
Proper loading is important regardless of the type of vehicle. Not only can overloading impair the driver’s ability to brake and steer correctly and strain the tires, it significantly increases your chance of rollover. Tire blowouts are a leading cause of van rollovers, especially when the van is full with passengers.
FULLY-LOADED 15-PASSENGER VANS HAVE A HIGHER RATE OF ROLLOVER AS COMPARED TO LIGHTLY-LOADED VANS.
Research from the NHTSA shows that fully-loaded 15-passenger vans have a higher rate of rollover as compared to lightly-loaded vans. Of the 657 fatal, single vehicle van accidents from 1990-2002, 349 rolled over. Overloading your vehicle is dangerous and is something you should avoid at all times.
Across the nation, the law requires children to be in proper restraints. Seat belts are your best defense against impaired and distracted drivers, as well as accidents. A large portion of fatalities from van accidents are those who chose not to wear a seat belt. 14% of those fatalities were properly restrained, and around 61% of fatalities were ejected from the vehicle. Seat belt use dramatically changes the chances of ejection from the vehicle.
While proper loading, seat belt use, regular maintenance, and safety checks are meaningful for regular vehicles, they are ultimately vital when it comes to 15-Passenger Vans. Drivers must handle 15PVs differently than regular vehicles, and they also require greater care and caution.
Learn more about the safety and risks of 15-Passenger Vans with our FREE Van Safety Kit, found here. Make sure your 15-Passenger Van drivers have been properly trained to operate these vehicles with us today.
Read more about the story of the 13 passenger crash here.