Tests Show Higher Risk for Small Cars in Crashes

The website latimes.com reported in an article on April 14, 2009 that the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has recently published the results of a series of crash tests. The Institute crashed a Honda Fit into a Honda Accord, a Smart ForTwo into a Mercedes C-Class, and a Toyota Yaris into a Toyota Camry each at 40 miles per hour. Test results showed that small cars may be more efficient but your safety is definitely compromised. The vehicles were tested in “offset” crashes in which the cars do not crash head on; instead, the collisions are made to simulate the type of collision that would occur during an auto accident if a car had veered over the center line where the damage can easily break into the passenger compartment. The institute believes that the cars sustained enough damage that their occupants would also have suffered moderate to serious injuries.

Adrian Lund, president of the Arlington, Virginia based institute said, “Though much safer than they were a few years ago, minicars as a group do a comparatively poor job of protecting people in crashes, simply because they’re smaller and lighter. In collisions with bigger vehicles, the forces acting on the smaller ones are higher, and there’s less distance from the front of a small car to the occupant compartment to ‘ride down’ the impact. These and other factors increase injury likelihood.”

Dave Schembri, president of Smart’s U.S. operations said the tests were an example of “rare and extreme” accidents. The Smart ForTwo meets or exceeds all U.S. government crash-test standards. The other manufactures released similar statements.

Everyday trusting consumers use a variety of products, such as automobiles, electronics and medications, and do not think of the harmful effects that those products may have on them. If companies produce dangerous or faulty products, they can cause serious bodily injury or even death to innocent victims. A product manufacturer assumes responsibility regarding the consumer. The public has the right to expect that a manufacturer will produce a safe product built with the highest quality materials available.

If you have been seriously injured in an car accident in Seattle, the Bernard Law Group can help you determine if the manufacture was at fault. They have been representing the victims of wrongdoing for years. Their team of devoted Washington defective product attorneys represents those persons who have suffered monetary loss, serious injury, personal loss and future damages due to negligence, including but not limited to, recalled products, auto product liability. Please call 1-800-418-8282 for a free consultation.