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Automobile safety improvements save lives and reduce vehicle accidents – July 20, 2012

Several times on this blog, I have written about the good news regarding reductions in injuries and deaths that have occurred in the U.S. over the past several decades.  Much of the credit goes to design engineers, governmental regulations and standards, and believe it or not, our personal injury legal system.  Despite what some people may say about the legal system, it has been very efficient in helping to reduce injuries and deaths across all sectors of our society and workplaces.

A new study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which came out in June of this year, shows how improved vehicle design has contributed to the historic recent decline in roadway deaths and injuries.

According to the study, the analysis comparing 2000 model year cars with 2008 model year cars, and showed a significant decline in the likelihood of have a vehicle crash and an increase in the likelihood of escaping a crash without  injury.

The improvements were because manufacturers are producing better-designed and safer cars and trucks. The result has been the estimated saving of two thousand lives and the prevention of one million occupant injuries in 2008 as opposed to 2000.

“Between better safety practices developed at the Department of Transportation and improved designs by automakers, we are making real progress protecting drivers and passengers nationwide,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “We celebrate the historic decline in deaths and injuries on our roads as we remain laser-focused on continuing to improve safety.”

The data showed that traffic related fatalities have steadily declined to 32,885 in 2010 which marked the lowest level in sixty years. The likelihood of escaping injury from a crash has been increased to 82 percent as opposed to 79% in the year 2000.

Hopefully with safer vehicle design, safer drivers and ongoing road improvements, these trends will continue to get even better in the future.

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