Half Of Small Cars Perform Poorly In Safety Study – Pose Increased Risk Of Personal Injury

August 13, 2013

As Buffalo personal injury lawyers, we know that no amount of money can replace your health, and the best injury is the one that never happens.  Unfortunately, when it comes to cars, we all end up balancing issues such as fuel efficiency and cost against vehicle safety.  Recently, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducted safety tests on a dozen 2013 and 2014 model small cars.  At the conclusion of the testing, fully half of the cars received ratings of marginal or poor.

This year, the IIHS added a new crash test – the small-overlap test – designed to reproduce what happens when only a front corner collides with another vehicle or hits a smaller object such as a tree.  This test was included based on studies finding that nearly 25% of front end motor vehicle collisions that result in serious personal injury or death involve an impact to only one corner of the front end.

This test also, in many cases, misses the main structures built into the middle of the car for the protection of passengers.  In the worst cases, safety cages collapsed, steering wheels containing airbags were pushed sideways and away from the driver, and side curtain airbags were found inadequate to provide protection.  The small cars that rated good or acceptable in the study were the 2 and 4 door Honda Civic, Dodge Dart, Ford Focus, Hyundai Elantra, and Scion tC.

Hopefully, this new testing will result in further improvements to vehicle safety.  Unfortunately, no car is completely safe in a motor vehicle accident.  If you have been injured in a car accident, please feel free to call us at 716-400-000 with any questions.

Insurance Group Rates Small Cars In Offset Crash Test,” New York Times, 8/8/13
Half Of Small Cars Score Badly On Tougher U.S. Crash Tests,” Chicago Tribune, 8/7/13