Crash Test Ratings Toughened In U.S.

On Tuesday, December 8, 2015, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), proposed revising the current crash test ratings system from a single overall score of 1 to 5 into a multifaceted scorecard. The scorecard would include the score on crash-avoidance systems and a mark for pedestrian safety. U.S. regulators are taking over the process of assigning safety ratings to new vehicles by proposing requiring more crash-avoidance technologies to achieve a perfect score.

As reported by The Detroit Free Press, this strategic shift makes way for the auto-safety industry to not just simply measure what happens to vehicles during collisions, but to determine how well vehicles can avoid accidents in the first place.

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The changes include:
•A new rating to gauge a vehicle's use of nine advanced technologies, such as forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and lane departure warning.
•New advanced test dummies with improved sensors to better predict injuries.
•A new frontal oblique crash test to address what NHTSA described as a type of angled crash "that continues to result in deaths and serious injuries despite seat-belt use, airbags and crash-worthy structures of late-model vehicles."

William Wallace, policy analyst for Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, said, “These updates will create a powerful incentive for automakers to make the latest life-saving technologies available on more vehicles more quickly, and that’s great news for consumers." 

NHTSA currently ranks cars simply based on crash-worthiness and a five star rating is a perfect score. The new system will retain an overall score, based on three sub-ratings: pedestrian safety, crash-worthiness and crash-avoidance systems.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx says, “The overhaul is part of the agency's strategy to spur the development of more safety technologies. When the seat belt was required, there was probably a lot of bellyaching about the cost then, but we now have that across the board, and it’s enhanced safety.”

Mr. Foxx makes a great point. With increased safety measures in every future car, the number of car accidents will significantly decrease, just as the number of injureis sustained in car crashes decreased after the implementation of the seat belt. 

If you have been injured in a car crash, call The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC today.  Our experienced and trustworthy personal injury lawyers are standing by to speak to you about your case. Our firm offers free consultations and honest and fair representation.  We work hard to recover the maximum compensation permitted by Michigan law including, in most cases, pain and suffering compensation. Call us today, at 844.4MI.FIRM, for a free consultation.