New NHTSA Standards May Reduce Personal Injuries Among Pedestrians, Drivers

December 11, 2015

Earlier this week, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration proposed a series of changes to its crash testing protocols and vehicle safety rating system. Though not yet finalized, the proposed changes would bring American crash testing standards up to par with those of other countries around the globe. As Ohio motor vehicle accident lawyers, the team at Lowe Scott Fisher Co., LPA knows firsthand the significant and potentially life-saving difference that these updates could make.

Pedestrian Crash Test Standards

Of all of the NHTSA’s proposed changes, the most overdue is the implementation of crash test standards to assess and limit injuries caused to pedestrians in motor vehicle accidents. If approved, the new pedestrian crash tests would assess impact to pedestrians at the head, pelvis, and leg. Similar pedestrian impact standards have been in place in Europe for some time, and it is encouraging to see U.S. agencies and lawmakers finally taking steps to protect pedestrians.

High-Tech Safety Assessments

Along with using new, “vastly improved” crash test dummies for analyzing occupant safety, the NHTSA also intends to implement assessments of modern “crash-avoidance” technologies—for example, technologies that alert drivers of vehicles in blindspots or systems that limit or warn of lane veering.

Half-Star Rating System and Additional Collision Testing

The NHTSA has also proposed angled frontal crash tests, which may more closely resemble a typical head-on collision between vehicles. The results of this crash test, along with all of the other safety assessments undertaken by the NHTSA, will then be used to rate a vehicle’s safety on a 5-star rating system that will now include ½ stars. This new half-star system would, ideally, require manufacturers to fully consider and implement all reasonable safety measures to obtain the NHTSA’s coveted 5-star rating.

The bad news for Ohio drivers is that, even if accepted, the proposed changes will not take effect until 2018.

Ohio Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyers at Lowe Scott Fisher Co., LPA Can Help Car Accident Victims

Government oversight is certainly helpful in curtailing unnecessary auto accidents. Unfortunately, many innocent drivers, passengers, and pedestrians will still be injured by defective automobiles and negligent drivers. If you or a loved one were injured in a motor vehicle accident, contact an Ohio motor vehicle accident lawyer at Lowe Scott Fisher Co., LPA for a free consultation.

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