Last month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced a new rule.*  According to David Strickland, NHTSA Administrator, the new rule is aimed at preventing the, on average, 373 fatalities and 476 serious injuries that occur every year due to people being partially or completely ejected through side windows during rollover crashes.

What Does the New Rule Require?

The new rule requires that motor vehicle manufacturers develop a countermeasure that would protect an adult who was not wearing a seat belt from moving more than four inches past the side window in a crash. 

In order to do that, side airbags would likely be made larger and would be deployed in all types of accidents.  The rule applies to all passenger vehicles under 10,000 pounds.  Car manufacturers must begin phasing in the requirements of the new rule during 2013, and full compliance will be required by 2018.

Why Focus on Rollover Crashes?

Any type of accident can be dangerous, but rollover accident injuries are often among the most serious.  Rollover accidents have accounted for approximately 10,000 deaths annually over the past ten years.  Those who survive rollover accidents are often left with serious injuries such as spinal cord injuries, head injuries and internal injuries.

Most importantly, rollover crashes are the deadliest type of crash.  As an Atlanta car accident lawyer, I can think of no better reason than to focus a rule on rollover crashes.  Especially a rule such as this one that is estimated only to increase car manufacturing costs by $31 per vehicle.

If you have been hurt, or if you have lost a loved one in a Georgia rollover accident, please contact one of the experienced Alpharetta and Atlanta rollover accident attorneys at The Dover Law Firm for a free consultation.  We can be reached at 770.518.1133 or via our online contact form.

*Source: NHTSA 01-11: U.S. Department of Transportation Issues New Ejection Mitigation Rule