When discussing the relative safety of different vehicles on the road, two primary factors must be considered: the likelihood of a given vehicle to get in an accident and how well that vehicle is able to secure its passengers when an accident does occur. Large vehicles such as pickup trucks and SUVs are traditionally viewed as safer than smaller automobiles. However, this is not necessarily a claim that holds constant across all models and a variety of features and elements must be considered before making any evaluations about a pickup truck’s relative safety.

Likelihood of Collisions

It is an often under-appreciated element in road safety: the larger your vehicle, the more likely it is to make contact with other vehicles on the road. By this reasoning, large or even mid-sized pickup trucks that generally take up much of the width of a lane and that require more room to maneuver, turn, and change lanes are at considerable risk of collision. Larger vehicles also have more mass and build up more momentum, making it more difficult for them to brake in time to avoid obstructions or other vehicles. In addition to this, a taller vehicle with a higher center of gravity is more likely to tip over from collisions or even sharp turns. This fact is not inconsiderable, as rollovers are involved in roughly 85% of traffic fatalities. In all, the greater the size of the vehicle, the greater the probability of accidents. The question then becomes whether, once in an accident, the pickup truck performs as well or better than alternative vehicle types.

Safety in a Collision

When most people think of the safety advantages of pickup trucks, what they think of is the greater size and durability of the truck in relation to other cars on the road and its ability to withstand impact once a collision does occur. The problem with this interpretation is that the strength and durability of a pickup truck’s frame and body actually counteract modern safety features. The contraction of safety belts and release of air bags in a collision is triggered by sensors placed throughout the truck’s body. The more rigid and impervious to collision that the body is, the greater the force required to set off the sensors and engage the vehicle’s safety features. While it is true that the other vehicle in a collision may sustain greater damage than the pickup, the true standard for safety is not the well-being of a vehicle after a collision, but the safety of its driver. In that sense, pickup trucks are not necessarily the safety ideal that they are often described to be.

What to Do If You Are In an Accident

If you have been the victim of an accident, getting you back to full physical and financial health means finding skilled, knowledgeable, and experienced legal representatives to assist you in acquiring the compensation that you are due. Your interests will be best represented by a firm that not only understands the law, but medical terminology, conditions, and procedures as well. You must assume that the other party in your case will acquire skilled representation and that you must do the same to ensure your well-being.