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How are bigger vehicles more dangerous for toddlers?

On Behalf of | Sep 19, 2023 | Automobile Accidents

Most drivers know blind spots exist among large vehicles, requiring more careful and vigilant steering maneuvers. These risks can result in severe repercussions, and unfortunately, they might also be present with typical SUVs and pickup trucks.

Bigger is not always better

As new car manufacturers release bigger and taller vehicles, they tend to come with significant blind spots directly up front, potentially matching the height of the average toddler. This means if a child stands still in front of the SUV, they can be invisible to the driver sitting behind the wheel. Some might consider blind-zone-related accidents unlikely, but  64 toddlers lost their lives because of these in 2016 alone.

In 2020, that total increased to around 744 fatalities, usually with vehicles moving forward or backward in driveways and parking lots. Visual safety features, such as cameras for the vehicle’s front and rear areas, could help address these risks.

Recently passed policies only require vehicles to have rear cameras, failing to address front blind spots that are equally dangerous. Additionally, older vehicles might not have these safety features at all, so these visibility hazards could continue to exist for a long time.

How bad is the visibility problem?

To accurately determine how bad the front blind spot is for the average SUV, researchers conducted an exercise. It involves children sitting in a line in front of vehicles, including various SUV and pickup truck models.

The exercise found that only the ninth to eleventh child was visible from the driver’s seat, while the children sitting closer to the vehicle were invisible. The results depend significantly on the vehicle’s height. The taller its stature, the bigger the blind zone.

Making vehicles safer for all

Children might be the most vulnerable to these accidents. Legislators know about these issues and continue to develop policies to make vehicles safer for everyone. As a precaution, adults should pay attention to and supervise toddlers, especially around and inside motor vehicles.

In the event of a preventable motor vehicle accident, seek legal counsel immediately by contacting the Law Office of Aman N. Shah. Doing so can help determine possible legal options and navigate the process of pursuing compensation.