New Evidence ESC Technology Reducing SUV Rollover Accidents to Record Low Levels


August 12, 2012

Technological improvements in electronic stabilization control (ESC) are turning the tide on SUV rollover accidents. Prior to the development of ESC technology, SUVs were among the most dangerous vehicles on Georgia streets and highways. Their high center of gravity and narrow wheelbase made them prone to fatal SUV rollover accidents.

Some safety advocates referred to SUVs as “moving death traps.” The improvements in SUV accident rates are largely attributed to the growing number of SUVs equipped with ESC systems. Because of the effectiveness of ESC systems in reducing SUV rollover accident rates, all new SUVs will be equipped with ESC beginning with 2012 models.

According to a publication released this month by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, SUVs are now among the safest motor vehicles on Georgia roadways. The institute produced a detailed analysis of vehicle accident rates, which reveals that the improvement in SUV accident rates is largely attributable to ESC technology. The publication also concludes that SUVs are now among the safest vehicles on the road because of their increased length, height, weight and rapidly declining rollover accident rates. Based on the report, ESC technology has led to an 18 percent reduction in insurance losses from SUV collisions.

The number of vehicle types and models equipped with ESC has grown steadily resulting in correlating declines in the number of SUV rollover accident rates. ESC was only offered as optional equipment in a few luxury vehicles in the 1990s. By 2002, ESC technology was available in 28 percent of passenger cars and 10 percent of SUVs. Approximately 65 percent of passenger cars were equipped with ESC while 96 percent of SUVs were equipped with this lifesaving technology. The current rollover death rate for all vehicles is less than half the rate of 1999-2002 models. The impact of ESC systems is even more apparent because SUV rollover rates have fallen below the average rollover rate for all motor vehicles.

Another interesting revelation in the study is that not only do SUVs have lower fatality rates than other vehicles of similar weight, SUVs have the best accident fatality rate pound for pound of all motor vehicles. Recently, the fatality rate for SUVs has fallen much faster than that for cars. Among the 26 motor vehicles with the highest death rates, none are SUVs.

Once SUVs are universally equipped with ESC beginning in 2012, it will presumably continue the momentum in reducing SUV rollover rates. Despite the advances in ESC technology, SUV rollover accidents will persist, particularly those involving SUVs still on the road that are not equipped with ESC. If you or your loved one has been injured in an SUV rollover accident or you have lost a loved one to wrongful death, our experienced Atlanta SUV rollover accident attorneys have been representing SUV accident victims for over 28 years.

Our Atlanta SUV rollover accident lawyers are available to assist clients throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Category: Auto Accidents

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