It’s no secret that newer cars are safer than the older ones, especially with all the new technological advancements that we are discovering and developing every year. But while they might be safer, just how much safer are newer vehicles? It’s important to look into what makes our modern vehicles safe as well as how far we’ve come in terms of auto safety.
Here at Robert J. DeBry and Associates, a car accident lawyer might see various cases of accidents caused by poor or unmaintained vehicle safety features. Taking a look at what makes modern vehicles safer to drive by comparing them to older vehicles is important in understanding how much safer drivers are on the road today. This blog will help you understand how our modern technology is reducing the number of accidents.
What Features Makes Car Crashes Less Fatal?
First, let’s take a look at the features that make cars safe. A vehicle today is equipped with the following safety features:
- Seatbelts: In the late 1940s, seatbelts were optional and didn’t become a standard until the late 1950s. However, that still didn’t mean they were mandatory, in fact, seatbelts weren’t required until the late 1960s. Seatbelts keep drivers and passengers inside the vehicle in the event of an auto accident.
- Airbags: The first airbags were invented in the 1950s and were made mandatory in 1980. Airbags were originally meant to prevent high-impact contact with the steering wheel, dashboard and windshield, reducing the amount of physical damage an accident can have on an individual. Modern vehicles today even have airbags that prevent collision with the pillars and windows of a vehicle.
- Crumple Zones: Crumple zones are meant to disperse the energy created in an accident in certain areas which provide controlled flexibility. These crumple zones are found at the front and rear of most vehicles and absorb crash energy and direct it around the safety cell.
- Safety Cell: The safety cell is built out of high-strength materials to prevent the vehicle from collapsing during a crash. The safety cell works closely with the crumple zones, as crash energy is directed around it instead of through it.
How Much Safer are Modern Vehicles?
The National Highway Traffic Administration has reports covering the number of motor vehicle-related fatal accidents year to year since 1899. With this information, we can see just how many accidents are resulting in fewer fatalities thanks to modern vehicle safety features. Based on the number of fatalities per 100,000 individuals within a population, the highest rate of fatality was during 1937 with 29.35. While that is the highest number, just about 50 years ago during the late 60s and early 70s, the rate ranged consistently from 25-26 fatalities per 100,000 for about 10 years. However, that rate has dropped significantly! Over the last 5 years, the rate has been around 10-11 fatalities per 100,000.
As developers continue to discover new safety features, the numbers are likely to keep dropping. Nonetheless, we know that not all accidents are avoidable, so if you or someone you know has been injured in an auto accident, contact a car accident lawyer here at Robert J. DeBry and Associates.
Our team of experienced professionals is ready to help you build a strong case, and whether you need a personal injury lawyer or a car accident lawyer, we will work tirelessly to get you the compensation that you deserve after an accident.