April 17, 2021

Modern Cars are Much Safer than their Predecessors

A success story about prevention of severe injuries and the occurrence of traffic accidents due to safety measures of cars
5 minutes to read

The Very Basic Concepts of Cars are still maintained

This car has basically the same elements as modern cars: A body, wheels, tires, a suspension system, an engine, a transmission, breaks, a steering wheel etc. Its performance is munch inferior to the one of a modern car, which is much faster, has much better acceleration and is most probably much lighter. Despite of the higher speed, which is a high risk in case of an accident, the modern car is much safer.

Number of vehicles population the Swiss streets from 1960 - 2019
(Source: CH Bundesamt fer Statistik)

This graph shows the number of motorized vehicles separated by types (Auto = cars) populating the streets in Switzerland. It is very obvious that cars are the most dominant vehicles and that over the years the number has increased substantially from below one million in 1960 to almost 6 million in 2019). One can deduct, that the number of kilometers traveled has increased dramatically as well. Combining the better performance with the higher number, and the longer disctance travelled, one would think that the number of car crashes would increase as the number of vehicles increases.

Number of traffic accidents (top) and number of persons killed in traffic acccidents (bottom) from 1940- 2019

Looking at a statistic about traffic accidents this is only true until 1970. In the 1970-ies and later, in contrary to the expectation, the number of car crashes and especially the fatal ones has decreased over time. The reason: PREVENTION in form of increased security measures: seat belt, air bag, safety cell with crash zones, ABS, and an array of active driver assistants like change of lane warning, car in the dead view zone warning, traffic sign warning on overhead display, too close t oprior car warning and active interventions of the complex security package! Just to name a few.

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