This is how car safety ratings are determined

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash-tests cars and determines safety ratings based on four factors: Measurements from dummies, survival space, airbags, and seat belt effectiveness. The IIHS is dedicated to preventing crashes and mitigating the damage they cause. The following is a transcript of the video.

This is how crash safety ratings are determined. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a non-profit. It is dedicated to preventing crashes and mitigating the damage they cause. It tests the most popular cars on the market. At the lab, workers drain the cars of fluids and replace the gas with a less volatile substance. The car is prepped with targets and inch tape. These are used to measure deformation during the crash. Cameras and dummies are placed in the car.

Four things factor into the safety rating. Dummies. Sensors in the dummy measure the impact on the body. Measurements from vital organs matter the most. Greasepaint on the face, hands, and legs is used to determine if the dummy contacts any hard surfaces. Survival Space. Survival space refers to the occupant compartment of the car. The less this compartment is crushed the more likely the airbags and seat belts can do their jobs. Airbags and seat belts. Analysts review footage to see if airbags deploy fast enough. And note how well the seat belt keeps the dummy within the vehicle.

The IIHS uses six crash tests to determine a car’s safety rating. There are three frontal crash tests. A moderate impact. Two small impacts on the driver and passenger side. Frontal crashes are the most fatal. Side impact crash test. This test simulates being hit by a pickup truck or SUV. Roof strength test. Roof strength is essential to surviving a rollover. A vehicle should be able to withstand four times its weight and the roof should crush fewer than 5 inches. Whiplash test. The car’s seat is set on a sled that simulates the impact of a rear-end collision. Readings from the dummies determine potential neck injuries. After all the tests are complete, a rating is assigned. Good, acceptable, marginal, poor.

The IIHS awards multiple cars the Top Safety Pick and Top Safety Pick Plus each year. Any vehicle that meets the criteria will be awarded. Each year the IIHS changes the criteria for these awards. The IIHS recommends purchasing a car with the best safety ratings in your vehicle class and price range.

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