Evolving SUV Technology Keeps Drivers Safer in Joplin & Throughout Missouri

566449_stop_light.jpgSport Utility Vehicles have gotten considerably safer in recent years. After the introduction of electronic stability control, the death rate in SUV occupants dropped nearly 70%, according to USA Today. In the past, SUVs were associated with a death rate of 82 per million vehicles for the 1999 to 2002 models: now , they have a driver death rate of 28 per million vehicles for the 2005 to 2008 models. This new technology in SUVs greatly reduces your risk of injury or death in the event of a car accident in Joplin, Missouri or elsewhere.

As safety technology continues to advance, drivers can expect to be better protected in a car accident. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, SUV drivers are some of the least likely to be killed in an accident: in fact, these drivers are now considered to be much safer than occupants of small cars. However, the number one preventative measure that a driver can take is still much simple: practicing cautious, alert and defensive driving habits.

Electronic stability control has been introduced more quickly in SUVs than in any other passenger vehicle. This technology uses the vehicle's engine power and brake system to help prevent incidents of skidding or rolling over.

Meanwhile, smaller passenger vehicles have experienced skyrocketing popularity as our gas prices continue to climb. Unfortunately, they are now three times more likely to die in an accident than SUV occupants. "The trend from the reported data is clear: The lighter the vehicle, the higher the likelihood that its driver will be killed in a collision with another vehicle," says Mukul Verma, a veteran auto industry safety official.

The death rate for the drivers of these smaller, four-door vehicles used to be 110 per million vehicles for the 1999 to 2002 models. This rate has improved to 72 per million vehicles for the 2005 to 2008 models, representing only a 35% decrease.

"The rollover risk in SUVs used to outweigh their size/weight advantage, but that's no longer the case," says Anne McCartt, the institute's senior vice president for research. "It's a dramatic change and a testament to the incredible effectiveness of electronic stability control."

Here are the top 10 safest vehicles (with the lowest rates of driver deaths), according to The Globe and Mail:

• Audi A6 4-door 4WD
• Mercedes-Benz E-Class
• Toyota Sienna
• Ford Edge
• Nissan Armada
• Land Rover Range Rover Sport
• Land Rover LR3
• Honda CR-V
• Jeep Grand Cherokee
• Acura MDX

"This report explains why Americans equate size with safety, even though small cars today are safer than ever before," says Wade Newton, spokesman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers.

The average death rate for older vehicle (1999 to 2002) is much worse than today's. These older vehicles saw a death rate of 82 per million for SUVs and 88 million for cars. Recent studies show that the death rate for SUVs is half that of small cars, according to The Wall Street Journal. In previous years, the rollover risk in these SUVs outweighed the size and weight advantage, but that is simply no longer true. "It's not just weight that gives SUVs an advantage. It's also their height and other factors. When cars and SUVs of similar weight are compared, the SUVs have lower death rates." says McCartt.

The current death rating for these vehicles is as follows:

• Minivans: driver death rate of 25
• SUVs: driver death rate of 28
• Pickup trucks: driver death rate of 52
• Cars: driver death rate of 56

It is important to note that large cars perform better than smaller ones: 4-door subcompacts have a death rate of 82 per million while large, 4-door cars have an average death rate of 46.

"For years, small cars have represented the low end of the economic spectrum and received fewer safety and enhanced design features," says Sean Kane of Safety Research & Strategies, which advises plaintiff lawyers, government and auto suppliers. "Undoubtedly, that has an effect."


If you are dealing with a car accident in Webb City, Anderson, Nevada, Neosho or anywhere in the surrounding areas, call 1-888-777-AUTO today for a confidential consultation to discuss your rights. Attorney meetings by appointment only.

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Categories: Roadway Safety