NC van accident attorneyRecently, a covered a church van accident in South Carolina took the life of a beloved pastor, Ronnie Wilson of the South Point Free-Will Baptist Church and seriously injured four other churchgoers. Unfortunately, deadly accidents involving these large 15-passenger vans are all too common in the Carolinas. Each year, about 100 people are killed in large van accidents and a much larger number of people are injured. Just last July in South Carolina, a young girl was ejected from a 15-passenger van and killed after a tire blew out on the vehicle.

What are the reasons for deadly 15-passenger van accidents? Many believe that the vans are unstable when fully loaded and extremely susceptible to rollover accidents. Especially if the driver must quickly maneuver the van to avoid an obstacle, the van’s high center of gravity makes it easy to flip. Statistics show that almost 60 percent of all van accident fatalities are due to rollovers. The more people in a 15-passenger van, the more likely it is to roll over or flip.

Another consideration is the van’s weight and size – compared to smaller cars and minivans, larger vans are harder to stop, turn, and back up. Many drivers of 15-passenger vans are not experienced and do not know how to control such a large vehicle.

Another related issue with 15-passenger vans is that three-point shoulder and lap belts were not required in the vans until recently, making the chances of an ejection during rollover or other serious back and neck injuries more likely. While the safety standards of new 15-passenger vans have improved recently, over half a million unsafe 15-passenger vans are still on the road today.