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June 5, 2012

Dangerous Vehicles on the Road

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The following vehicles have been determined to be the most dangerous vehicles on the road, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS):

1) Dodge Ram 1500; score 2/5; bad ratings: side collisions and rollover

2) Colorado Crew Cab; score 3/5; bad ratings: side collisions, rollover & rear end

3) Mazda CX-7; score 4/5; bad ratings: rollover and rear end collisions

4) Mazda CX-9; score 4/5; bad ratings: rollover and rear end collisions

5) Nissan Pathfinder; score 3/5; bad ratings: rollover and rear end collisions

6) Jeep Wrangler; score 3/5; bad ratings: side collisions and rear end collisions

7) Suzuki SX4; score 2/5; bad ratings: rollover and rear end collisions

These vehicles were deemed the most dangerous based on 4 rating categories of the IIHS tests. The categories were: (1) a front crash test where a vehicle travels at 40 mph and hits a barrier head on; (2) a side-impact crash test where an SUV type vehicle strikes the driver side of the testing vehicle at a speed of 30 mph; (3) rollover crash testing where the vehicle is hit by metal plates on the corners to determine force capacity before the vehicle rolls over; and (4) a rear-end crash test where seats and seat belts are tested for protection against whiplash and other head and neck injuries.

Consumer Reports and crash safety ratings performed by the National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the JD Power's Initial Quality reports were also used to analyze the vehicles performance.

December 16, 2011

Automobile Related Fatalities Decreased in Maryland in 2010

774604_car_accident_1.jpgThe number of automobile accident related fatalities decreased by about 10 percent, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, from 2009 to 2010. In 2009, there were 549 automobile accident related fatalities and in 2010 there were only 493. The reason there was a decrease is because there are better air bags and anti-rollover technology in newer vehicles, drivers are using their seatbelts properly and more often and there has been an improvement in safe-driving campaigns in the state of Maryland, according to the AAA Mid-Atlantic.

Another factor for the decrease is that Maryland police officers and other law enforcement officers have been cracking down more on drunk drivers. Repeat offenders have had to install start up kits/breathalyzer machines in their vehicles that do not allow the vehicle to start/turn on if there is alcohol in their system.

Also, speed limits are followed more by drivers because of red light and speed cameras all over the state of Maryland. Therefore, drivers are respecting the speed limit in certain areas more. Another factor is that in the state of Maryland it is prohibited to use a handheld device while driving. Be it for talking on the phone, texting, viewing messages or communicating through media outlets while driving.

When you consider all these factors, one can better understand how there has been a 10 percent decrease in automobile accident related fatalities in Maryland. One can only hope that there has been a bigger decrease in 2011.

October 18, 2011

NHTSA 2012 Crash Test List

In October 2011, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published its 2012 Vehicle Crash Test List. The NHTSA will be crash-testing a total of 74 vehicles for safety ratings. The vehicles that will be tested include 42 passenger cars, 22 crossovers and SUVs, 2 minivans and 8 pick up trucks. The crash-testing of these 74 different makes and models will result in consumer safety data of about 81% of all 2012 passenger vehicles available in the United States.
Rollover testing will also be conducted. The results will yield a safety rating for about 92% of vehicles available in the United States in 2012.

Some of the vehicles that will be tested are:
2012 Chevy Silverado
2012 Ford F-150 Supercab
2012 Toyota Camry
2012 Ford Explorer

Hybrid and electric vehicles will also be tested. For example: the 2012 Toyota Prius, the 2012 Honda Civic Hybrid and the 2012 Honda CR-Z.

Anti-collision technology of the 2012 BMW 328i, the 2012 Volvo S60 and the 2012 Chevy Equinox will also be tested for safety, making it the first time the NHTSA will be evaluating this type of technology.

For a complete list of vehicles that will undergo crash-testing, please visit

April 26, 2011

New Air Bag Requirements in the U.S.

Airbags Deploy.jpg47 percent of people killed in rollover accidents are ejected from their vehicles, according to a Reuters report. Ejections from rollover accidents account for most fatalities. Most ejections occur through the side windows of vehicles.

Rollover accidents account for one third of all crash fatalities. That is about 10,000 deaths per year over the past 10 years, making them the deadliest of all motor vehicle accidents. This is one of the most important reasons why the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has come up with new air bag requirements.

The NHTSA is requiring manufacturers to enlarge side curtain air bags, make them stay inflated longer and make them deploy in all types of serious accidents. These new requirements are designed to save lives, by creating another barrier to ejection from vehicles, even when windows are down or when drivers and passengers are not wearing their seat belts.

In 2013 the new air bags will begin to appear in vehicles and be in full implementation by 2017. The new air bag rules will apply to vehicles weighing 10,000 pounds or less. The implementation of these new air bags will cost the manufacturer an average of $31 per vehicle, but it is predicted that the new rule will save an average of 373 lives and 476 serious injuries per year.