Each year, automakers up the ante on safety equipment. From radar guidance systems for emergency braking to air bags located virtually all over the vehicle, manufacturers have made significant investments in research and development to bring you vehicles designed to be as safe as possible at the time of a collision. The best way to save lives in vehicle accidents is to avoid a collision in the first place. What if something as simple as the color of a piece of plastic could save lives?
In 1986, the government instituted the mandatory eye-level, third brake light. The study justifying this change said that it would help eliminate 4.3% of rear-end collisions. In a 2008 study of real-world rear end collisions, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration concluded that vehicles equipped with red turn signals were 22% more likely to be involved in a rear-end collision than vehicles with amber turn signals.
The next year, the NHTSA did another study, analyzing vehicles that had undergone a mid-year design change from red to amber, and determined that the amber signals were 5.3% more likely to avoid collision. That’s a 25% bigger impact than the 1986 mandated brake light change. Yet over a decade later, no changes in vehicle safety requirements have changed. This simple update could save lives, so one wonders why it hasn’t become mandatory.
As a consumer, there are a couple of things that you can do. The first is to check your turn signals. Are they amber or red? If they are red, you could decide that it’s time to invest in a new vehicle, or perhaps there are aftermarket replacement parts available that can change your signals from red to amber.
Personal injury attorneys may assist you when you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident. They are responsible for staying on top of to safety news like this so that you’re better equipped when the time comes to make your case.