IIHS finds rear seat safety in small cars needs improvement -Dlight News

IIHS finds rear seat safety in small cars needs improvement

Back in December, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) released its newly reworked moderate front overlap crash test. The difference is that the dummy was now sized to represent a 12-year-old child or a small woman to assess the safety of rear passengers. According to the organization, the likelihood of a fatality in the rear exceeded that of the front, which was the most dangerous position for years. While the newly revised test is not yet part of its official testing for Top Safety Pick awards, it will certainly become standard, and the organization is testing select vehicles with it in the meantime. He recently test drove five small cars, mostly sedans, and found that rear seat safety needed significant improvement. Five vehicles were tested namely Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, Subaru Crosstrek, Kia Forte and Nissan Sentra. The Civic and Corolla fared best, but received only the second-highest rating of “Acceptable.” The Crosstrek, Forte and Sentra were all rated with the lowest “poor” ratings. Across the board, all vehicles exhibited seatbelt submergence, which is when the lap-belt portion slides above the waist, increasing the possibility of abdominal injury. The Civic and Corolla otherwise performed well in protecting the three areas the IIHS looks at: chest, thighs, and head and neck. The latter three models show a higher risk of head and neck and chest injuries, with ratings between “weak” and “marginal”. This small car is certainly not alone in showing the disparity between front and rear protection. Many other vehicles the IIHS tested with the new overlap test also fared poorly. So it’s definitely not just a small car problem, but across the segment. The IIHS has a few suggestions for improving rear seat results. In the video at the top, seat-belt tensioners and force limiters (to keep the passenger in the first position, but to start releasing to prevent belt damage) are listed. Also, the IIHS asserted that, despite rear seat safety, it is still the safest place for children. This is because airbags can be harmful to children. Also, the back seat is no less safe than before. The front end is getting safer thanks to major improvements in front passenger safety with a focus on airbags, seatbelts, tensioners and structural improvements.
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