This paper reviews the current evidence supporting the benefits of improving automobile safety by regulation of product design, and proceeds to an independent evaluation of the effects. Technological studies imply that annual highway deaths would be 20 percent greater without legally mandated installation of various safety devices on automobiles. However, this literature ignores offsetting effects of nonregulatory demand for safety and driver response to the devices. This article indicates that these offsets are virtually complete, so that regulation has not decreased highway deaths. Time-series (but not cross-section) data imply some saving of auto occupants' lives at the expense of more pedestrian deaths and more nonfatal accidents, a pattern consistent with optimal driver response to regulation.

  • Availability:
  • Corporate Authors:

    University of Chicago Press

    1427 E. 60th Street
    Chicago, IL  United States  60637-2954
  • Authors:
    • Peltzman, S
  • Publication Date: 1975-8

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 677-725
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00099698
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: HS-017 477
  • Files: HSL, TRIS
  • Created Date: Nov 5 1983 12:00AM