Did You Know?
All new cars must meet certain federal safety standards. However, that doesn’t mean all cars are equally safe. Many automotive manufacturers offer safety features that go beyond required federal minimums. Learn what safety features to consider when buying a vehicle.
Shopping for a Safe Vehicle
Evaluate these five safety features when purchasing a vehicle:
1. Crashworthiness: These features reduce the risk of death or serious injury when a crash occurs. Crashworthiness ratings can be found at: www.iihs.org.
2. Vehicle structural design: A strong occupant compartment, known as the safety cage, as well as front and rear ends that are designed to buckle and bend in an accident to absorb the force of the impact.
3. Anti-lock brakes: Anti-lock brakes pump automatically many times a second to prevent lockup and keep you in control of your car.
4. Daytime running lights: These lights automatically turn on with your car. By increasing the contrast between a vehicle and its backgrounds and making the vehicles more visible to oncoming drivers, these lights can prevent daytime accidents.
5. On-the-road experience: Some design features can influence injury risk on the road. For example, some SUVs are prone to rolling over. “High performance” cars typically have higher-than-average death rates because drivers are tempted to use excessive speed.
Belts, airbags and head restraints work together to protect people in serious vehicle crashes. Lap/shoulder belts hold you in place, reducing your chances of slamming into something hard or getting ejected from your vehicle. Without a safety belt, you will continue moving forward until something stops you. Unfortunately, it is often a hard-interior surface. Consider the vehicle’s safety features when you are shopping for your next vehicle.
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