Every crash that occurs features unique characteristics. The specific vehicles involved, their speed at the time of the crash and the angle of approach when they collide can all influence the scope of the damage and the injuries incurred by the occupants of the vehicles in question.
Certain factors have a known association with poor outcomes, including high speeds and inclement weather conditions. Additionally, a very large vehicle colliding with a smaller, more compact vehicle is also a risk factor for poor outcomes.
Bigger and heavier vehicles can do more damage
Ever since pickup trucks and SUVs started dominating the roads in terms of popularity, those in smaller vehicles have had to worry about the possibility of a severe crash in which they suffer fatal injuries and the occupants of the other vehicle walk away unscathed.
Thankfully, manufacturers have started taking the large size of other vehicles into account when designing more compact models. Careful designs intended to help a vehicle protect occupants in the event of a collision can go a long way toward protecting passengers in more compact vehicles in a crash involving a figure vehicle.
Despite these advances, large vehicles are still a major safety concern. While the risk is lower now than in the past, trucks manufactured between 2013 and 2016 are still 2.5 times as likely as a simple car to kill the occupants of the other vehicle. Researchers also worry about the proliferation of electric vehicles in larger sizes, as they are even heavier than their gas-fueled counterparts.
What happens after a crash featuring a size discrepancy?
With the exception of commercial vehicles, which require extra insurance coverage in most cases, bigger vehicles are typically subject to all the same rules and requirements as smaller vehicles. That may mean that the driver of a truck or SUV has very low insurance coverage and cannot fully compensate the other party after a crash that causes severe vehicle damage or major injuries.
When people drive large vehicles and do not carry adequate insurance to protect against the liabilities such vehicles generate, they may open themselves up to the possibility of a civil lawsuit brought by someone who gets hurt in a crash.
Learning more about the factors that contribute to motor vehicle collisions can help people protect themselves on the road and make better decisions about their insurance coverage and vehicle purchases. This knowledge may also prove to be useful in the event that an accident cannot be avoided and an accident injury victim needs to seek legal guidance to better protect their interests in the wake of a crash.