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Four Dead, Four Injured in Pomona SUV Rollover

emergency responder ambulanceIn mid-October, a sports utility vehicle (SUV) went off the 60 Freeway in Pomona, tipped, and rolled downhill off the freeway. Four passengers were killed and four were injured.

The California Highway Patrol (CHP) is investigating the crash as a hit-and-run. Elena Chavez, the of the Ford Explorer, told authorities she believed that a white car clipped her as she drove on the 60 Freeway near Reservoir Street. As a result, she lost control of the vehicle, which precipitated a rollover down an embankment alongside the freeway.

Hit and run accident investigation

Those fatally injured were Noemi Herrera, 21, Elba Rosales, 26, Luis Herrera, 29, and Gerardo Herrera, 49, all of nearby Lake Elsinore.

The other four victims were taken to nearby hospitals. Officials said all had suffered “moderate to major” conditions.

Not all passengers were wearing seatbelts, and six people riding in the SUV were thrown from the car. At least one of those killed was wearing a seatbelt, however.

The CHP and the local police department was searching for the white car cited by Ms. Chavez, but had not located one by the night of the accident.

The eight people were celebrating an engagement. The passengers were friends and in-laws as well as the engaged couple. They had been celebrating at Universal Studios.

Rollover fatality rate high

Although vehicle rollovers constitute just 3% of all serious accidents, 2010 figures show that they accounted for roughly 30% of all fatalities. Any car, given the right conditions, can roll over. But SUVs and other large and high vehicles are much more prone to roll over than standard sized cars.

Because their center of gravity is so high, some older SUVs, vans and trucks are prone to lose their balance much more easily than standard size cars.

Rollovers stem from a vehicle tipping in a single direction, either left or right. The tip is usually triggered by an event, such as encountering an obstacle on the road or being swiped by another vehicle. The tip throws the vehicle entirely off-balance and it rolls over.

Data indicate that twice as many SUVs roll over as other car types. Nearly 63% of fatal traffic accidents in California (1762 out of the 2009 total of 2816) were single vehicle accidents, many of them SUVs.

Car accident lawyers Los Angeles trusts

If you have been hurt in a rollover accident in Southern California, get in touch with Ellis Law. Our investigative team will review your situation to find out causes and liability issues. We can provide information about whether you or a loved one has grounds for filing a personal injury lawsuit. Damages recovered in a car accident case can cover medical bills, lost wages, emotional suffering, and funeral costs in the event of death.

Speak with an experienced Los Angeles car accident lawyer today– call 1-800-INJURED.