America's SUV Love Affair Has Led To A Big Rise In Deaths

SUVs are two to three times more likely to kill a pedestrian in the event of an accident, one report found
America's SUV Love Affair Has Led To A Big Rise In Deaths

Us petrolheads like to bemoan the SUV takeover of the modern car landscape, don’t we? We’ll whinge endlessly about more interesting cars being discontinued due to lack of interest from SUV-obsessed car buyers, but there’s a far more serious consequence of these high-riding road hulks populating the world in ever greater numbers.

An extensive investigation from the Detroit Free Press and USA Today has found that the rising popularity of SUVs is the “leading cause” in a shocking 46 per cent increase in pedestrian deaths in the country. There were nearly 6000 pedestrian fatalities in 2016 alone, the publications noted.

So, why SUVs in particular? It’s all down to the shape: they’re tall and generally slab-fronted, making potentially fatal contact with someone’s chest or head more common. According to a 2015 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report, pedestrians are two to three times “more likely to suffer a fatality when struck by an SUV or pickup than when struck by a passenger car.”

After analysing federal data, Detroit Free Press and USA Today concluded that there was a 69 per cent increase in SUV involvement when it came to pedestrian fatalities from 2009 to 2016, while also noting that the proportion involving SUVs had increased each year.

America's SUV Love Affair Has Led To A Big Rise In Deaths

At the time of the NHTSA report, the organisation said that its vehicle safety rating system would be dramatically modified, but this is yet to happen.

Many of those killed were jaywalking and/or under the influence of alcohol, although as “long-standing common factors,” it’s not thought these account for the rise. Something that might have contributed is growing distractions from smartphones, for both the pedestrians themselves and the drivers, but it’s difficult to know how big the problem is as “data is lacking to quantify distraction,” the publications explained.

Make sure you check out the full report here.


Matt 44

If the government only allowed SUV to be sold to land owners or members of off road associations there wouldn’t be so many plonkers filling the roads with two ton lumps of metal.

07/04/2018 - 15:11 |
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€urodriver (Quattrosquad) (Group F50)

In reply to by Matt 44

Half of the suvs only have 2 wheel drive and don’t do anything offroad… My wagon has awd so that makes it a better offroad vehicle imo 😂but i understand your point :)

07/04/2018 - 15:57 |
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Cobra RS

Not surprised! Most of them are so ugly that you’d die just looking at them!

07/04/2018 - 15:41 |
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Really? A larger heavier vehicle more likely to kill a pedestrian? No…..I don’t believe it… /s

07/05/2018 - 14:20 |
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Well i know towing and ground clearance is a huge argument for me personally but i see what you’re saying. Most people dont need it but word to the wise, using an old audi or BMW to tow a car with a flatbed on it is all kinds of stupid if it weighs more than 3000lbs. That is genuinely the stupidest thing you can do on the road short of driving into oncoming traffic. The car’s chassis, brakes, transmission and suspension are not built for it and i’ve seen one too many pea brained drivers up and tow something just because their car has the horsepower to but end up with something broken. Just buy a pickup or an SUV, bite the bullet. To put it blunt, the 1500 and 3500 trucks have the exact same engine but you dont see 1500s carrying 18 tonnes

07/09/2018 - 17:49 |
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