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Car Safety Improvements

I’ve never talked to an older mechanic that didn’t mistrust newer cars. They don’t like the complicated mechanical and computer systems. Or, they believe cars are weaker because they crumple in a crash. Are older cars safer? Are car safety improvements real or a trick to sell more expensive cars?

do new features keep drivers safe

Newer Cars Are Safer Cars

According to crash data and statistics over the years, we can see newer cars are significantly safer than older cars. A person in an accident in a car from 2012 is 56% less-likely to die from the crash than a person in a car from the 1950s.

The First Car Accident

The first car accident in the world happened in 1891 in Ohio City, Ohio. The driver hit a tree root and swerved into a hitching post. Both the driver and passenger had minor injuries. Have cars gotten safer since then?

Personal Injury Lawyers Force Car Safety Improvements

Yes. Car safety improvements are real. Many safety improvements are the result of personal injury attorneys. We may not all agree that cars are much safer than they were in yesteryear. Just check out this comparison video of the 1959 Chevy Bel Air against the 2009 Chevy Malibu.

In the video, you see a classic Chevy Bel Air and new Chevy Mailbu collide head-on. I think this video and many others like it speak for themselves. The video credits the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety in forcing car safety improvements.

However, did you know this is due to the hard work of personal injury lawyers? Why else would insurance companies be focused on safety?

How Injury Lawyers Force Safety Improvements

Personal injury lawsuits focus on helping victims of injuries. Car accident injury claims are paid through car insurance coverage. Additionally, injury claims are often more costly than replacing a damaged car. Through their work, personal injury attorneys have forced insurance companies to focus on safety.

How Insurance Companies Force Safety Improvements

Insurance companies get stuck with the bill for people injured in car accidents. These companies learned early on that they were losing a lot of money in car accident injury claims. Car insurance companies lobby the government and manufacturers to constantly improve safety. The goal? To avoid paying out money in injury claims.


The CDC states that seatbelts save tens of thousands of lives every year. Seatbelts were not mandated in the US until 1961, and that was only in the state of Wisconsin. Since 1966 all cars in the United States include seatbelts as standard equipment.

seatbelts are proven to save lives

In 2002, a study by Volvo estimates over a million lives were saved over 40 years of seatbelt use. That’s a lot! Learn more about the history of seatbelts.


One of the basic improvements of car safety is the airbag. Airbags are designed to protect the skull, brain, and chest if a collision occurs. A seatbelt will hold you in the seat. But, an airbag helps reduce head and neck injuries.

Vehicle Crumple Zones

Car manufacturers built tough cars through to the 70s. Vehicles were solid and heavy. Through crash studies, we learn vehicles were made to withstand damage in a low-speed collision. But, this didn’t protect the people inside the car. In fact, these cars caused more injuries and deaths because of how they were built.

Modern cars are built to protect the people inside. Passengers ride inside a “safety cage” to is more durable to impact. The rest of the car will crumple to slow down or deflect the force of impact. A car can be repaired or replaced but, the human body is more fragile.

Driver Assist Features

Over the years safety and technology features have evolved. One major driver assist is the ABS system – the anti-lock braking system. You might remember “pumping the brakes” to slow down in slippery conditions.
The ABS system prevents brakes from locking and skidding if a hard brake occurs. Its system is designed to allow the brakes to stop the car without further compromising safety.

Collision Warning Systems

Another driver assist is the warning system. This system detects if anything is too close to the vehicle. For example, another vehicle in a blind spot, or a pedestrian behind the vehicle. This system alerts the driver. In some cases, the system can automatically slow down or stop to avoid a collision.

collision warning systems car safety improvements

Future Vehicle Safety Features

As technology continues to evolve and improve, we continue to find better ways to keep people safe. Carmakers are installing camera systems, radar, lidar, and other features to make cars the safest they’ve ever been. Manufacturers are even working on self-driving technology to remove human error.

What Drives Safety Features?

Many new, innovative safety features have been implemented in today’s cars. So what drove these new safety features to be installed? INJURY LAWSUITS!

Thank An Injury Lawyer

We have our brilliant personal injury attorneys to thank for urging car manufacturers to provide more safety features in their designs. If you can walk away from a vehicle collision, it’s because of the hard work of injury lawyers to put an end to injuries.

Don’t forget to thank a car accident injury attorney today!