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Old 12-14-2009, 07:27 PM   #11 (permalink)
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As stated in PM - I'm not a mod. I can't ban you. I wouldn't have, anyway, even if I had the ability, but those pictures really do elicit a bad response from me.

If you'd made it more clear that you were posting in jocularity, that would have been awesome.

No offense meant to you, sir. It was a general comment about the pictures and the rumors they perpetuate.

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Old 02-04-2010, 06:29 PM   #12 (permalink)
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How about I even the score a bit:

Over 10,000 people die every year in the US in SUV rollovers.

This blows out of the water the idea that they are safer than small cars

SUV Rollover Crash Facts
Crashes in which a vehicle rolled over accounted for more than half of all single-vehicle crash deaths. (NHTSA)

Vehicle rollover crashes are especially serious because they so often result in head injuries. Head trauma is the most frequent type of fatal and nonfatal injury in rollovers. (NHTSA)

The rate of serious injury in passenger vehicle rollover crashes is 36 percent higher than in crashes where there is no rollover. (NHTSA)

More than 90 percent of passenger vehicle rollover crashes are single-vehicle crashes, and 8,345 of the 10,142 occupant deaths occurred in single-vehicle rollover crashes. (NHTSA)
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Old 02-04-2010, 06:41 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Now, if those numbers included the vehicles weight.
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Old 02-04-2010, 10:12 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Indeed, weight is a major factor.

Vehicles with more mass will maintain more energy in the event of an accident because of the law of inertia. This means passengers in heavier vehicles won't be thrown around quite as much as passengers in lighter, smaller cars, depending on the type of collision.

While it is true that trucks and SUVs can and do roll over from a high center of gravity, it does not mean larger, heavier vehicles can't be safer in certain situations. For example, take the SUV out of the equation and have a Lincoln Town Car collide with a Honda Civic, then see who goes spinning. The laws of physics are not "rumors."

Beyond physics, there is also the driver's skill that needs to be considered. Inexperienced drivers will swerve harder than needed, which may cause the vehicle to roll.
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Old 02-05-2010, 08:28 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I personally think the Prius fatal accident rate has more to do with the typical Prius driver than the vehicle itself. I would argue that there is an disproportionally large percentage of Prius drivers whose driving style is inherently safer when compared to other midsize cars drivers.
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Old 02-05-2010, 09:57 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I think there's a lot of factors going into the Prius (and other compact cars) safety record. As orange4boy said, 10,000 people die each year in SUV rollovers. What percent of the vehicle fleet is SUV's versus compact cars? I'd like to know percent of deaths in SUVs versus that of compact cars (like for every 1000 SUVs the death rate is .05 or something, then the same measure for compacts) that would give an apples to apples comparison.

The argument of whether a small car is as safe as a truck/SUV keeps coming up. Why? A quick look at the physics seems conclusive. The human body suffers damage as a result of the -impulse- sustained in a collision. The change in momentum (mass times velocity) over a short time span exerts tremendous forces on human tissue, ie neck, brain, chest, organs). The less change in velocity you have during an accident the better your survival rate is (thus why people walk away from a 10mph parking lot bump). Extending the same change in velocity over a slightly longer time span also results in large reductions in the forces applied to your body. In a head-on collision of two vehicles traveling at the same speed:

For an elastic collision (kinetic energy conserved, like billiard balls, its not but assume)
The heavier vehicle -always- maintains more of its initial velocity (and thus, less impulse on the occupants)

For an inelastic collision (kinetic energy not conserved, but momentum is, more like a car accident)
The heavier vehicle -still- maintains more of its initial velocity (and thus, less impulse still) than the smaller car.

Go ahead, check it out, Georgia State University says so:
Standard Collision Examples

Put in your own values for masses, and velocities... you always want to be riding in the vehicle that sustains a smaller impulse. And this does not take into account the smaller crush zone available on the small car, which compounds the impulse problem. Nor does it account for the point of impact problem. (If my Silverado T-boned a Prius the truck bumper is about level with the door handle, mostly passing over the Prius' relatively rigid door rail and floorboards).
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Old 02-05-2010, 12:55 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I think that you could say that it's the fault of the Prius driver, as opposed to the vehicle, but that's adding a new variable to an already sullied equation.

If you sit and think about it, it's true. You put one of us (attentive, responsible, etc) behind the wheel of an SUV, and the chances of a rollover crash go down ALOT. Versus the "average" driver, who has a higher death percentage from rollover crashes.

At the same rate, throw a jerkoff driver in the safest car there is, and he'll find a way to wreck it and kill himself. And frankly, if he can do that, I'm not so sure we (as a species) are not better off because of it.
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Old 02-05-2010, 04:50 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
At the same rate, throw a jerkoff driver in the safest car there is, and he'll find a way to wreck it and kill himself. And frankly, if he can do that, I'm not so sure we (as a species) are not better off because of it.
Unless they take one of us safer drivers with them.

I agree with most of the above. It's been a good balanced discussion. I realize that a raw number does not have much weight in a statistical analysis and that vehicle safety has just as much to do with the nut behind the wheel as FE.

As for vehicle safety, the variables are enormous, A small, light car is more maneuverable and resistant to rollover, a heavy car has more inertia and possibly more sheet metal to act as a shock absorber but possibly won't be able to avoid an accident as easily. SUV's have better forward visibility but relatively poor avoidance ability and if they roll the possibility of injury or death skyrockets.

Like so many discussions of "this is better than that" It all comes down to "it depends"

Blanket statements need not apply.
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Old 02-05-2010, 10:33 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orange4boy View Post
Unless they take one of us safer drivers with them.

I agree with most of the above. It's been a good balanced discussion. I realize that a raw number does not have much weight in a statistical analysis and that vehicle safety has just as much to do with the nut behind the wheel as FE.

As for vehicle safety, the variables are enormous, A small, light car is more maneuverable and resistant to rollover, a heavy car has more inertia and possibly more sheet metal to act as a shock absorber but possibly won't be able to avoid an accident as easily. SUV's have better forward visibility but relatively poor avoidance ability and if they roll the possibility of injury or death skyrockets.

Like so many discussions of "this is better than that" It all comes down to "it depends"

Blanket statements need not apply.
I fully expected that, from someone. It really is a matter staged more for discussion than anything, but without hardcore study, I don't think we can really reach any kind of positive/negative about the situation. In fact, even with the most hardcore studies, I don't think it could be that black and white. I think that the answers for safety lie more in the gray area on a case-by-case basis.
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Old 02-05-2010, 11:21 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I just find the safety discussions tiresome. The biggest risk you take is being in or around cars, after that it is pretty much diminishing returns.

But I will say that nobody ever accidently killed someone else while riding a bicycle or walking that I know of. It probably happened, once, but one would have to be delusional to think bigger vehicles are "safer" in any but the most selfish respects, and it isn't much improvement in that respect if even.

If it is true that bigger causes more damage and is more likely to hit something because of size and reduced handling (basic physics right?) then at some point all that extra damage and casualties has to be considered premeditated, no?

I doubt any U.S. politicians are going to run on that platform any time soon though

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