December 22, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 11

TOP SAFETY PICK awards for 2008 include 11 first-time winners

Thirty-four vehicles earn the Institute's top award for 2008 for good protection in front, side and rear crashes and available electronic stability control.

Nissan Quest has worst bumper performance among 6 minivans

Six 2008 model minivans failed to prevent extensive damage in low-speed bumper tests. The Nissan Quest was the worst with more than $8,000 in damage.

Six 2008 model minivans failed to prevent extensive damage in low-speed bumper tests. The Nissan Quest was the worst with more than $8,000 in damage.X

Yes, improve fuel economy, but do it with safety in mind

As Congress prepares to raise fuel economy standards, it should be sure to preserve the safety gains of recent years.

October 13, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 10

Reducing BACs to the legal limit could save almost 9,000 lives a year

A new study quantifies the lives that could be saved if there was no impaired driving and looks at how that could be achieved.

Allowing belts to loosen in crashes may be contributing to injuries

Study suggests safety belt force limiters may contribute to some crash injuries even as they prevent others.

New data confirms that stability control cuts fatalities

The latest federal study of ESC shows that the technology reduces single-car fatal crashes by more than a third. The reduction is about twice that for SUVs, pickups and vans.

Risk compensation theory pops up where it's completely irrelevant

An article claiming that Britain's safety belt law didn't save lives is the latest instance of this idea being applied incorrectly.

For the 2nd time, federal court tells FMCSA it failed

A federal court rejects regulators' latest rule on work hours for truck drivers.

September 11, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 9

Special issue: motorcycles

Supersport motorcycles are designed for racetracks, driven on highways

Supersport bikes are becoming increasingly popular, but motorcyclists who ride them have death rates 4 times higher than those who ride other types of motorcycles.

Supersports dominate the worst list for theft losses

Supersport motorcycles top the list of bikes with the highest theft and comprehensive losses.

Helmets are key to reversing growing trend of rider deaths

As motorcyclist ridership increases, helmet use is on the decline, leading to more deaths.

Novelty helmets prove flimsy in federal tests

Federal researchers tested seven popular novelty helmets and found they don't offer the same protection as helmets that comply with regulations.

August 4, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 8

Nothing luxurious about this$5,486 damage in a minor bump

Luxury cars sustain major damage in crashes at the speed of a brisk walk, new Institute tests show.

Head restraints are improving but not fast enough

Cars and SUVs have shown big improvements in their head restraints and seats since the Institute first started evaluating them, but pickups and minivans lag behind.

Proposed NCAP improvements don't go far enough

The Institute supports changes to NCAP but says they should be more far-reaching.

June 15, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 7

Good news about teen driversCrashes continue to fall

New research shows continued progress in reducing fatal and nonfatal crash rates among 16 year-olds, and the gains haven't been offset by higher crash rates among older teenagers.

Many teens still get permits as soon as possible

A survey of parents finds teens are getting their licenses as soon as they're eligible. The parents say they plan to supervise their kids closely.

Parents don't always pick the safest vehicles for their teens

Many beginning drivers have vehicles that don't protect well in crashes, a survey of parents of teens finds.

All trucks need recorders, not just those driven by habitual violators

Electronic recorders can help reduce drowsy driving by truck drivers, but federal safety officials want to require them only for habitual work-rule violators.

Institute supports speed limiters as big rigs' interstate speeds rise

A proposal to require speed limiters for large trucks would keep speeds to a maximum of 68 mph. Institute surveys indicate that truck speeds have been rising on rural interstates.

Door latch standard is strengthened but still requires work

The federal government has strengthened the standard on door latches, but the new rule doesn't go far enough.

May 31, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 6

Special issue: crashworthiness of convertibles

New IIHS ratings of convertibles show fun cars can incorporate safety

The Saab 9-3 and Volvo C70 earn the Top Safety Pick award in the Institute's first tests of 10 midsize convertible models.

How to minimize the safety tradeoffs

The point of convertibles is fun, but it's possible to factor in safety when choosing one.

Death rates aren't higher in convertibles, but a roof still is safer

Contrary to expectations, death rates for convertibles track closely to those of hardtops.

May 12, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 5

Special issue: day of crashes

The faces behind the tollA typical day of crashes

June 7, 2005, was a typical day of crashes. Here are some of the stories of those who died on the roads that day.

April 19, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 4

Special issue: driver death rates

Driver deaths by make and modelFatality risk in 1 vehicle versus another

Some passenger vehicles have much higher driver death rates than others. The average rate for 2004 and equivalent models was 79 per million registered vehicle years.

March 19, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 3

Special issue: older drivers

Why older drivers crash at intersections and what can be done about it

New Institute research looks at why older drivers are so overrepresented in intersection crashes.

Reducing the risk for older drivers

States are trying a variety of approaches for evaluating and regulating older drivers. Results are mixed.

Perspective on older driversThey aren't the most hazardous ones

Older drivers pose a risk primarily to themselves. Their crash rates aren't nearly as high as those of teenagers.

March 1, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 2

Special issue: new bumper tests

New crash tests show high cost of bumpers that fail to bump

The Institute has revamped its bumper test program, and the new tests reveal numerous problems that result in excessive damage in minor impacts.

January 27, 2007 |Volume 42, Number 1

Red light cameras in Philadelphia all but eliminate violations

A new study reveals that both lengthening yellow light times and installing cameras reduce red light running, but it's the cameras that make the biggest difference.

New study looks at how and why beginning drivers get into crashes

Researchers find that 16-year-old drivers often crash simply because they aren't paying attention.

Study shows fuel economy can be improved without compromising safety

Reducing vehicle weight but not size could improve fuel economy without sacrificing safety, a new study claims.

How airbags went from controversial to commonplace

Former Institute president Brian O'Neill reflects on the history of airbags and what the future holds.