National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Proposes a Significant Overhaul on U.S. Vehicle Safety Ratings
More than 32,000 people die on the roads each year. In 2015, millions of vehicles were recalled because of defects; some were responsible for wrongful deaths and injuries. To manage these defects, and to hopefully improve overall safety on the road, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is proposing a significant overhaul to the safety ratings minimums of U.S vehicles.
New Crash Test Technology
One of the best ways to determine just how safe a vehicle—or to better understand ways that safety could be improved—is through crash testing.
The NHTSA wants to improve this testing process by including more advanced dummies that might help automakers better understand how pedestrians are impacted during a crash. They also want to introduce new oblique crash tests that would measure how well vehicles protect their occupants in angled, front crashes. Lastly, they would like to improve upon the full-frontal barrier-crash tests already used to improve safety of passengers in the back seat.
Autonomous Driving Technologies
We may not have the technology that allows us to hand over all of our driving responsibilities to our vehicles, but there are features that allegedly improve our ability to safely navigate the roads. The NHTSA would like to see some of these features—blind spot warnings, automatic emergency brakes, lane departure warnings, forward collision warnings, and rear visibility cameras—as much of a mainstay on vehicles as the airbag is today.
Decreased Ratings for Unequipped Cars
Many automakers have stepped forward, saying they planned to make automatic safety features standard on all of their vehicles. However, the NHTSA is planning to take their word a step further by dropping their safety ratings if they should fail to carry such features. This could greatly impact their sales potential since many Americans research and consider those safety ratings before purchasing their new vehicle.
Wrongful Death or Injury Due to Defective Vehicle? Hire an Experienced Defective Vehicle Attorney
Although their efforts are commendable, there are still some potential loopholes in the safety rating overhaul proposal, namely the enforcement of improved testing of safety features that are meant to save lives but sometimes fail because of defects. It is a factor in the number of people killed or injured in automobile accidents each year, after all. If this has happened to you or someone you love, you have the right to seek fair compensation.
The skilled Appleton defective automobile attorneys and Green Bay defective automobile attorneys at Herrling Clark Law Firm Ltd. can help. Dedicated to representing victims of defective products, we provide compassion, understanding, and aggressive advocacy. Find out more by calling 920-739-7366 and scheduling your free initial consultation today.