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Should the government take action to prevent side underride collisions?

Side underride accidents result in some of the most devastating injuries imaginable.

These accidents can essentially shave the roof off of a car. This can result in the decapitation of the driver and passenger(s). Those who survive often suffer incapacitating injuries to the head, brain, neck, and spinal cord.

Unfortunately, trucks are not required to have side guards that could prevent many of these injuries and deaths.

What is a side underride collision?

A side underride accident is a type of vehicle crash in which a smaller, lighter car collides with a larger truck and runs under the truck. These collisions often occur when a truck is turning onto a street or highway or performing a U-turn.

Side underride collisions result in at least 200 deaths per year in the United States, possibly more.

Vehicle safety features (such as airbags and seatbelts) do little to protect passengers involved in these types of accidents. However, safety features on the truck – namely, side safety guards – could go a long way in preventing injuries and deaths.

Government action is necessary

Currently, commercial trucks in the U.S. are only required to install rear safety guards. However, these do nothing to stop side underride collisions. Many European countries require side guards on large commercial trucks, but the U.S. has yet to enforce similar safety standards.

Many truck manufacturers and lobbying groups oppose side safety guards, citing cost, technical, and weight increase concerns.

Many argue that the dangers of these types of accidents have been known for years, yet the government has done little to push the idea forward.

What do you think? Should more be done to prevent these types of accidents? Please weigh in with your thoughts below.