The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has recently published figures of driver deaths, including some surprising figures for driver deaths per vehicle model, with an amazing nine vehicles with death rates of zero among 2011 models.
Of course, motoring is still a risky business, and there are many factors which result in overall vehicle safety figures, and on a personal level driving safely is still the most effective way to keep you and other road users safe. However, according to the IIHS ‘The chances of dying in a crash in a late-model vehicle have fallen by more than a third in three years’. The report reveals that ‘There were 7,700 fewer driver deaths in 2012 alone than there would have been had vehicles remained the same since 1985.’
So, What Is Behind This Safety Revolution?
There may be several factors behind this sharp decrease, but from the data it is clear that one of the major reasons is an improvement in vehicle design and in safety technologies, and this trend seems to be increasing faster year by year. In fact, the IIHS state that Eight years ago, there were no models with driver death rates of zero (see Status Report special issue: driver death rates, April 19, 2007). Now there are nine!
There are differences in vehicle death rates with different size cars, and it seems to be evident that small cars do return figures with the highest death rates, whereas two-thirds of zero-death-rate vehicles were SUV’s.
What Does The Future Hold For Vehicle Safety?
Although rapid developments in vehicle safety and design are taking great leaps forward, sadly, it may be decades, if ever at all when we see traffic deaths become a thing of the past, and there will have to be significant advancements and changes in other areas such as road policy and design before we truly see the future we all want…no deaths on our country’s roads.
Statistics and data are taken from the ‘Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Highway Loss Data Institute’. The full, original article can be read here: http://www.iihs.org/iihs/sr/statusreport/article/50/1/1