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Are vehicle types or crash test ratings more important?

You're looking to buy a new car. You have a general sense that an SUV would be safer because of its size, but you look at the crash test ratings. Some small cars have even better ratings than the SUV that you want. Which is more important? Do you want the larger vehicle or the one with better test scores?

While it may sound like test scores matter more, researches who carried out a study actually found the opposite to be true.

First, they looked at head-on crashes involving SUVs with higher crash test ratings than the small cars that they hit. The people in the cars, which were both smaller and had worse ratings, were a full 10 times as likely to be killed.

That's in keeping with both sides of the equation, though. So do the tests matter?

For the next part of the study, the researchers looked at passenger cars that were in head-on crashes with SUVs that had lower crash test ratings. Even though the cars scored better, the people in those cars were over four times as likely to be killed as those in the SUVs.

What the study suggests is that the type of vehicle plays a massively bigger role in your safety. Even a poorly-rated SUV may keep you safer than a highly-rated car, and a highly-rated SUV is the best option of all.

No matter what type of car you drive, though, you can be seriously injured in an accident caused by another driver. A loved one could be killed in the wreck. If either thing happens -- or both -- it may be time to consider your rights to compensation.

Source: Science Daily, "Passenger car drivers are more likely to die in crashes with SUVs, regardless of crash ratings," accessed June 16, 2017

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