A study by Dietrich Jehle, MD, professor of emergency medicine in the UB School of Medicine and Biomedical Science finds that bigger vehicles may actually be safer than smaller ones. He says, “The most important point of our study is that vehicle weight and price have a positive relationship with vehicle safety.”
In other words, cars that you think are safe – regardless of their safety rating by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety –may not really be all that safe, if the findings of Jehle’s study are accurate.
“Neither media advertising nor the five-star safety ratings accurately reflect the level of danger or lack of danger in vehicles,” he adds. Why, you ask?
“When smaller cars hit a larger, moving vehicle, that change in velocity can force the smaller car to go into reverse, resulting in far more serious injuries to driver and passenger.” In this case, smaller vehicles would include any number of popular compact sedans, such as the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla.
So, which vehicles are the safest?