Older Cars Prove More Fatal
November 2, 2018
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a report indicating that newer vehicles are significantly safer than older models. Data from the NHTSA’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System shows a higher proportion of fatalities occurred in accidents involving older model vehicles. Vehicles manufactured in 1984 or earlier had a 55 percent fatality rate compared to the 26 percent fatality rate for cars manufactured between 2013-2017. The data also revealed that the severity of injury for a victim of car accident increased the older the involved vehicle model. The proportion of occupants fatally injured in crashes decreased for each newer model year.
Data Behind the Findings
Older model cars are missing many of the most important safety features that make newer cars less likely to be involved in fatal collisions. Many features of vehicle safety systems now are mandated by the government. However, even cars that begin with the highest safety quality ratings will become more dangerous over time. As a car ages, it becomes less reliable and thus, less safe.
According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), vehicles manufactured over 10 years ago also are at a much greater risk for breaking down on the road. Vehicles that break down on the side of roads may be stranded there, causing a dangerous road condition that can lead to serious motor vehicle accidents.
Older vehicles can be especially vulnerable to breakdowns in certain weather conditions. Extreme temperatures place additional strain on the engine, battery and tires of older vehicles. In addition to typical roadside problems such as flat tires or dead batteries, older model vehicles also may breakdown as a result of more serious problems. The AAA data indicates that older model vehicles are four times more likely to have breakdown problems requiring a tow to a repair facility than newer model cars.
Some of the more common problems associated with older vehicles include battery-related issues, engine cooling systems failures, and tire damage.
Faulty car starters or nonfunctioning alternators are two typical battery problems. Older cars are also at risk for failures of engine cooling systems. When the age of the radiator, thermostat, water pump or timing belt begins to show, these important car components can fail without any warning to the driver. Fluids pooling underneath an older model vehicle when it is parked can be an important sign that a problem exists and should be taken seriously.
Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP Help Accident Victims Obtain Compensation for Their Injuries
Car accidents involving older model vehicles can result in significant bodily injuries including broken bones, loss of limbs, internal bleeding, traumatic brain injury and even death. If you or your loved one has been seriously injured in a car accident, you may be entitled to compensation. At Galfand Berger LLP, our experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyers are ready to assist you. Call us today to arrange a free initial consultation at 800-222-USWA (8792) or contact us online. From our offices conveniently located in Philadelphia, Lancaster, Bethlehem, and Reading, we represent clients across Pennsylvania.