SMALL CAR SAFETY IN THE 1980'S

The seven papers contained in this report describe various aspects of the small car safety problem and suggest some solutions. The small car safety problem is illustrated by the fatality projection chart on the report cover. This chart shows that large increases in deaths of subcompact car occupants may be expected if current trends continue. The first three papers in this report deal with trends in small car design, market penetration, and safety. The last four papers deal with solutions available to mitigate the small car safety problem. These solutions include actions the consumer can take to improve the safety of small car operation. They also include actions the Government has taken to develop and test vehicles with higher levels of safety and to develop information about automobile safety for the consumer. Although research conducted to date indicates that improved crash performance of small cars is easily possible and that a large variation exists in the crash test results of different small cars on the market, no solution is offered to individual consumers who desire higher levels of safety in their cars. Suggested actions to improve small car safety include (1) more perfect safety standards which insure that the worst cars perform as well as the best ones; (2) improved consumer information to allow consumers to select the level of safety they desire, and (3) continued research in safety improvements to determine the safety features which are most effective and to advise the consumer and the Government on the levels of safety which are feasible through advanced technology. (Author)

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 148 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00342449
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: HS-805 729
  • Files: HSL, TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jan 29 1982 12:00AM