4×4 Drivers Need to Take More Care Says Road Safety Charity

UK road safety charity, Brake, fights to highlight the ever present dangers on UK roads for drivers, pedestrians, cyclists and horseback riders. According to Brake, 4x4s present a significant danger on Britain’s roads. A pedestrian struck by a 4×4 is twice as likely to be killed than if hit by a smaller, more traditional car like a saloon or medium sized family vehicle.

A Popular Vehicle

Once the vehicles of farmers and those on country estates, the UK now enjoys a very healthy 4×4 market.We bought twice as many 4x4s in the ten years after the millennium as we did in the ten year’s previous to it. According to figures provided by Brake, more than 20% of these were bought in the Greater London region, making them predominantly city and suburban-use cars. The bottom line is that 4x4s are a significant presence on our roads and we need to do everything we can, whether in the form of a charity or personal injury compensation experts, to make sure everyone understands the dangers, both behind the wheel and in front of the vehicle.

The School Run

Parents dropping their kids off at school in a huge 4×4 tend to get a lot of criticism, but it’s worth remembering that 4x4s can make superb family cars in terms of space, passenger safety and dexterous use. 4x4s habitually make “Best of” lists when it comes to passenger safety, and we can all agree that choosing the safest transport for our kids is critically important. We don’t believe in vilifying suburban families for choosing 4x4s, but we do think everyone could do with a few pointers to help keep the folks outside the car safe too.

Pedestrian Dangers

Road traffic accident compensation involving a 4×4 and a pedestrian is more likely to be the result of a serious accident. 4x4s tend to perform very poorly in terms safety tests, with some well-known models even scoring a 0. The shape of a 4×4 means the point of impact on the body is higher and broader. This makes head and chest injuries more common than lower body injuries. Children are especially at risk of fatal injury.

Other Traffic

A study by the Transport Research Authority (TRA) showed most accidents between two cars were between a very large car and a very small one.

The rise in popularity of mini cars like the Smart Car and in 4x4s has led to a very broad spectrum of car sizes in the UK. The wide shape of 4x4s means it can be tough for them to spot very small cars before an accident. An injury compensation claim made by the victim of a 4×4 road accident is more likely to involve serious impact injuries and significant damage to the smaller car. According to Brake, the best way to reduce the number of accidents involving 4x4s is to use a different vehicle or take advantage of public transport on a more regular basis.