When buying a new car, there is always the question of whether to get a big car or a small car. The reasons most people consider may be that small cars have better fuel efficiency, but big cars are better for travel and could be more comfortable with extra space. Considering gas prices, something like the Smart Fortwo, Toyota Yaris, or the Honda Fit might seem to be good choices.
Since gas prices are not all that cheap, oftentimes, car buyers may end up favoring the small automobiles. Our firm’s car accident lawyers strongly believe that safety is an important factor that many people may overlook when deciding on these matters.
Side-impact simulated auto accident crash tests performed by the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety show that there may be exceptions to the bigger-is-safer rule. However, fatality statistics may show a more accurate truth about the safety of the vehicles. They show that occupants of the smallest cars are about 51% more likely to experience a wrongful death in a car accident than occupants of midsize or larger cars (according to the fatality statistics of 2006).
Although automakers have been trying to increase safety of small cars (and they have been getting safer over the last 10-15 years), larger vehicles have also been getting safer. Plus, physics inevitably dictates that when a Smart Fortwo of 1,800 pounds crashes into a Chevrolet Tahoe of 5,500 pounds, the Fortwo is the one to suffer more property damage and therefore deal more possible injuries to the driver in the car accident.
Our firm’s car accident lawyers believe that car buyers should check up the auto accident crash statistics conducted by the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety and see that small cars have similar car accident crash test ratings to large cars in frontal crash tests. The problem with these statistics is that frontal tests are conducted with vehicles of roughly the same size (e.g. small cars with small cars, big cars with big cars). But in real life, car accidents can happen just as often between 2 small cars or between a small car and a big car. So realistically, we believe the safety of small cars in crashes is probably nowhere close to the safety of big cars.
This difference in auto accident safety is clearly shown when the side impact test Insurance Institute of Highway Safety is given. A great example is how well the very small Smart Car did in frontal and side impact simulated auto accident crash studies. Because the impact comes from a ram that strikes the car’s side, this test is not biased, and comparisons can be made accurately between large cars and small cars. These ratings show that on average, smaller cars are subject to more damage than bigger cars in the case of a side impact car accident.
The car accident attorneys at our firm believe the safety of drivers and passengers are most important. It is vital to consider every type of impact in a crash test and to know how safe your motor vehicle really is.
Call us now at 1-858-551-2090 or click here for a free consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney and find out how we can help you. We speak English and Spanish, and we look forward to providing advice for your case. No fee if no recovery.
SENIOR PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY & FIRM FOUNDER
Michael Pines is a former insurance company attorney who graduated from the University of California Hastings College of the Law in 1987. While he was an insurance attorney, he learned from behind the scenes how insurance companies work and how they decide how much to pay injured people. Now that he works against insurance companies, Michael’s inside knowledge has resulted in significant benefits to his clients injured in car accidents. Learn more about Michael Pines