The Safest Cars in Accidents

Although no car can guarantee that you will not be injured in an accident, any highway accident attorney will tell you that there are definitely some cars that are safer than others. In the majority of accidents, the cause is due to driver error, impaired driving or poor weather conditions. The type of vehicle you are driving could make the difference between being injured or walking away from the crash. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) compiled a list of eight of the safest cars. IIHS conducted several evaluations, including a review of all-around crash prevention to compile the list.

Acura TL

The Acura TL offers side airbags, electronic stability control, antilock brakes and daytime running lights as safety features. During crash tests, dummy movement in the vehicle was well-controlled and the driver side airbag deployed properly. Measures of the crash test dummy indicated a low risk of significant injury during the test.

Dodge Avenger/Chrysler 200

The fact that measures taken from the crash test dummies after a front-end collision showed a low risk of injury makes the Dodge Avenger, and its twin, the Chrysler 200, could mean you walk away from the accident with only a minimal case for your highway accident attorney. IIHS reported that although the crash test dummy’s head hit the roof rail and one of the car pillars, the impact was minor as restraints kept movement of the dummy minimal. The vehicle offers side, front and rear airbags, electronic stability control, antilock brakes and daytime running lights as safety features.

Honda Accord

In crash tests, the Honda Accord, in both the 2- and 4-door models, the dummy movement was well controlled, and measurements indicated a low risk of injury to the dummy. The airbags deployed, the dummy moved into the frontal airbag, returning to the seat without coming close to any of the structures in the vehicle that could cause injury. Side and front airbags, electronic stability control, antilock brakes and daytime running lights are additional safety features on the Honda Accord.

Kia Optima

The dummy movement in the Kia Optima was well-controlled, with the dummy moving into the frontal airbag. Once the dummy connected with the frontal airbag, its head came into contact with the side airbag, but did not come into contact with any of the structural parts of the vehicle. Measurements taken showed a low risk of injury during a crash. The Kia Optima also offers side and front airbags, electronic stability control and antilock brakes. Daytime running lights are an option for the 2013 model.

Nissan Altima

The 4-door model of the Nissan Altima scored a rating of “Good” in crash tests performed by the IIHS. During the tests, the dummy moved forward into the front airbag, rebounding into the seat without connecting with any structures of the vehicle. Measurements indicated a low risk of injury to the dummy Intrusion into the driver’s space was also minimal, reducing the possibility of leg or foot injury.

Subaru Legacy and Outback

Both the Subaru Legacy and its twin the Outback scored a rating of “Good” in crash tests. In the test on the Outback, both a driver and rear seat passenger dummy indicated low risk of significant injury. Both occupants were protected from striking solid portions of the vehicle by the side airbags. The Subaru Legacy and Outback both offer side, front and rear airbags, electronic stability control, antilock brakes and daytime running lights. In addition, the vehicles offer a rollover sensor designed to deploy the side airbags should there be an impending rollover.

Volkswagen Passat

Both the driver and the rear passenger crash test dummy indicated a low risk of injury during a crash in the Volkswagen Passat. The driver was protected by the side airbag, as was the rear seat passenger. Neither occupant struck any hard structures of the vehicle during the crash. The Volkswagen Passat offers side, front and rear airbags, electronic stability control, antilock brakes and daytime running lights as additional safety features.

Although the Ford Fusion, Suzuki Kizashi and the Volvo S60 also made the list issued by the IIHS, there were areas of the crash tests where these cars scored “Acceptable” rather than “Good.” For more information on safe cars in accidents, contact your highway accident attorney.

When Should You Hire a Highway accident attorney?

We have all seen the television commercials that advertise the services of a highway accident attorney. Whether you are located in Maryland or Florida, each commercial seems to have similar sets of characters: a lawyer recounting the grim realities of being in an auto accident and former clients who have won large sums of money in settlements. These commercials imply that every person who is involved in an accident has the right to file a lawsuit. What the commercials fail to mention is that every accident does not need to involve a consultation with an attorney.

Many accidents involve cases that are considered to be minor. Minor cases can generally be handled through an insurance company. Accidents can be categorized as minor when there is a clear judgment of who caused the accident, medical bills are small or non-existent and there is no issue that requires additional expert investigation. This does not account for all accidents, of course, and sometimes a case that initially seems very straightforward and minor can become more complicated as time goes on and more problems come up—for example, delayed injuries, or unforeseen consequences such as the loss of a job due to time missing from work.

What if you are unsure about whether you need to consult an attorney? There are certain instances in which it is advisable to get legal guidance about your case. Complex legal issues are present in a large number of cases, and if you are ever at all concerned that you do not understand what is going on, in general you should see if you can receive some legal advice. A person should definitely consider hiring a highway accident attorney when the following factors are present:

  • It is unclear as to which party is at fault in the accident.
  • There is uncertainty about the manner in which your claim should be assessed.
  • A claims adjuster requests you to release medical records from a previous auto accident.
  • Assistance is required to negotiate the terms of a settlement.
  • The amount of lost wages is difficult to calculate.  This scenario occurs with people who are business owners and commissioned salespersons.
  • A claim has been denied by the insurance company.
  • There are serious injuries and major medical bills.
  • There is a dispute in the liability.
  • Your accident requires expert investigation.
  • You have been served with a lawsuit.

Contacting an attorney as soon as the incident occurs can help you avoid expensive financial mistakes. When there is doubt about whether you should contact a highway accident attorney, it may be beneficial for you to make the call. The consultation is usually free, and you can get some valuable advice. If the attorney believes your case is valid, then you will be asked to schedule an office consultation.

You should remember that claims adjusters work on behalf of the insurance companies. They may sound friendly, but they are not on your team. Any facts that are conveyed to the claims adjusters are recorded and will be used to determine your liability and limits on damages. It is always in your best interest to get sound legal advice regarding your case. Keep in mind as well that insurance companies hire attorneys of their own and keep them around specifically to make sure that they are able to interpret laws in such a way as to deny as many claims as possible; it is not necessarily that insurance companies are inherently evil as it is that they are run on a for-profit basis. If the insurance company goes to the expense of including lawyers among their payroll, it will likely be of good benefit to you to at least consult with a highway accident attorney to understand your rights.