NHTSA study says that cars are getting safer

Article by Christian Andrei, on June 20, 2012

Based on analysis of police-reported crash data, the safer vehicle designs have helped in lowering the incidence of roadway crashes and fatalities. This study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration came to the conclusion that cars are becoming safer. This report didn’t put the spotlight on any particular safety technology or design improvement but it said that the possibility of crashing per 100,000 miles of driving has decreased five percentage points in a 2008 model compared with a 2000 model.

The study found that in this same model-year span, the safer designs have raised the likelihood of escaping a crash uninjured from 79% to 82%.

In the NHTSA’s estimation, these safety advances have saved 2,000 lives, helped a million occupants to evade injury, and averted about 700,000 crashes. These are based on the data in 2008.

In a statement, NHTSA Administrator David Strickland said that this trend is likely to continue as automakers give their fleets more advanced safety features and as they continue to improve vehicle designs to get top safety ratings under the recently updated 5-star crash-test program.

The agency added that in 2010, U.S. traffic deaths dropped to their lowest level in 60 years with 32,885 deaths. In 2011, the deaths fell by 1.7% more to 32,310. It didn’t take long for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers to take some of the credit for this achievement.

This industry trade group represents 12 automakers. The alliance released a statement to cite the increased safety on the roads now because of how automakers are “doing many things very well…”

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