Early yesterday morning, a rollover crash on I-96 near Brighton claimed one life and hospitalized two other victims. According to reports, a 19-year-old Detroit woman was killed when the 1995 Toyota 4-Runner in which she was traveling rolled on the exit ramp.

Three of the four occupants of the vehicle were ejected. Two of the crash victims were airlifted to the University of Michigan Hospital, where the young woman eventually succumbed to her injuries. A third survivor was transported by ambulance.

Initial reports suggest that high speed may have been a factor in the accident. Sport utility vehicles, with their high centers of gravity, are particularly susceptible to rollovers and ejection. When a vehicle leaves its wheels, roof strength becomes a major factor in the survivability of an accident. Older SUVs, such as the 1995 Toyota involved in this crash, often have insufficient roof strength to protect the occupants of the vehicle. In addition, the risk of ejection increases significantly when seat belts are not used or are used improperly.