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  1. #1
    Senior Member royalflash's Avatar
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    but not very surprising

    here is part of an article from Yahoo UK news:

    (http://uk.news.yahoo.com/07102005/34...an-threat.html)

    "A study in America recently found that, for the same collision speed, the likelihood of a pedestrian dying was nearly doubled in a crash with a large SUV compared with a normal passenger car.

    The researchers said other studies reported higher rates of risk - up to four times - for serious injury and death in such collisions.

    It is the geometry of the front end structure of SUV that poses the increased risk, the authors said.

    Pedestrians injured by cars normally suffer mainly leg and knee fractures from the primary impact with the bumper, while head injuries often occur in the secondary impact with the bonnet or windscreen. The researchers said: "SUV bonnets are higher than those of cars and this results in more severe primary impact on the critical central body regions of the upper leg and pelvis."

    They said that a collision with an SUV also resulted in a doubling of injuries to vulnerable regions such as the head, thorax and abdomen. The researchers added: "The evidence shows that SUVs represent a significantly greater hazard to pedestrians than ordinary cars - and those pedestrians are getting older and more vulnerable.

    The researchers said one measure should include changing crash investigation processes to identify SUVs in statistics on road accidents. They said that informing consumers of the increased risk to pedestrians from SUVs may represent a "useful first step" in raising public awareness
    ."

    can anyone explain why driver's of SUV's who hit and kill people shouldn't face criminal charges particularly now they have this information?
    Last edited by royalflash; 10-07-05 at 11:04 PM.
    only the dead have seen the end of mass motorized stupidity

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    (well if he was alive today he would have written it)

  2. #2
    Violin guitar mandolin
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    They are, of course, criminally and civilily liable as are all drivers for actions that run counter to the law or that represent negligent behavior.

    I recall being hit by a VW bus. Not very friendly, either. Tire marks on my legs as I rolled out from under. The only time I didn't end up on the hood! The risk is certainly real.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
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    That intent must be proven in order for criminal liability to be charged. The driver in Florida that ran down a paceline head on after crossing over a double yellow "No Passing" centerline was not charged with homicide, since they couldn't "prove" he had intent, and had his license yanked and fined about $1,000.
    If he'd had three beers before doing that, he'd have been in jail. If you conciously reduce your ability to make competent decisions while driving, by drinking, you could be charged with the crime. But if you make the same exact maneuver while stone-cold sober, you can get off scott-free of criminal charges.

  4. #4
    Telemark! TeleJohn's Avatar
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    Guns don't kill people, people kill people.

    Ergo

    SUV's don't kill people, people driving SUV's do.

  5. #5
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    By the logic proposed by the OP, anyone operating any vehicle (even a bicycle) should be subject to criminal prosecution, since the seriousness of the impact is greater than if the operator had been walking. Or, if an accident involves any speed over 5 mph the operator is criminally liable because the damage is known to be more than if a vehicle is travelling less than 5 miles per hour.

    But, let's ignore that point of disagreement to discuss other related issues. Traffic laws should place the limitations and the cops should ENFORCE them for safety. If you are relying on logic to prove criminal negligence, then I think you are out of luck on this point. If the law allows usage of an SUV, and millions of people do so, then you are unlikely to get ANY judge to recognize someone as negligent for using one.

    I can think of no reasonable way that a law would be worded that would allow commercial trucking, which is needed for commerce, while prohibitting SUVs. Also, even if we outlaw SUV's the auto manufacturers will figure out a way to comply with the letter of the law and create a new class of vehicle... We will suddenly end up with a new crop of "mega-wagons," station wagons with that added height that makes them more convenient.

    NOTE: I do not think that people driving compact cars are generally idiots. I am using the tem "idiots" in the following comment to further limit the group I am referring to, not to describe compact car drivers in general.

    For full disclosure, I do drive an SUV (Saturn Vue). However, I do think I am safer to pedestrians than the idiots in compact cars that drive 10 - 15 mph faster than I do.
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  6. #6
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dchiefransom
    If he'd had three beers before doing that, he'd have been in jail. If you conciously reduce your ability to make competent decisions while driving, by drinking, you could be charged with the crime. But if you make the same exact maneuver while stone-cold sober, you can get off scott-free of criminal charges.
    Excellent point.

    In our zeal to increase safety we make DUI a greater crime than any other activity that causes death or serious bodily harm.

    In my region, I rarely read about a serious accident caused by drugs or alcohol (there is at least one notable exception)... I suspect that there is a major reason for that. The punishment for hit and run is significantly less than drunk driving, so a drunk driver has no reason except for conscience to remain at the scene of an accident. There is hardly a week that I don't read about a hit and run accident...

    In the one notable case recently, a person crossed the center line into a line of motorcycles killing one and injuring several others (at least one critically, the widow of the man killed). The police let him go after taking the drug/alcohol tests with nothing but a ticket or two. Once the tests came back, he was arrested on homicide charges... What does it matter? The deceased is not any deader, and the injuries are no more severe? While I understand it emotionally, it makes no sense logically.

    If I get drunk and shoot someone, I could possibly get off easier because I was drunk. If I get drunk and run someone over, I will suffer greater consequences because of it. I don't worry about how this effects me as a driver since I don't drink, but it doesn't make sense.
    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

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  7. #7
    EARTH IS FULL. GO HOME. heckflosse's Avatar
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    Although I tend to agree with some of that article it makes me wonder why they compared 'large' SUVs to 'medium' sized cars? Could they find any large cars or medium SUVs, you only have to look at the Honda CRV to see not all SUVs are killers. I wonder if they're going to issue the same warnings about People Carriers, Mini Buses, Vans etc.

  8. #8
    Bent_Rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by royalflash
    "[I]A study in America recently found that, for the same collision speed, the likelihood of a pedestrian dying was nearly doubled in a crash with a large SUV compared with a normal passenger car.
    In the current American mindset this is totally irrelevant, as the only concern for Americans today is for ones self. There is a perceived safety advantage in driving an SUV (which is untrue in fact, due to the rollover risk and the lack of maneuverability) so any additional risk to those outside is not a concern. A totally self-centered point of view, but this is the America of today.
    "The American way of life is not negotiable" Dick Cheney.

  9. #9
    Chairman of the Bored catatonic's Avatar
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    Quick answer would be this, pity it will never happen:

    In event of a collision, whoever was in violation of the law is automatically at fault. If both parties violated the law resulting crash, both parties are at fault. Then finally make sure they get the hell ticketed out of them.

    I'm pretty sure there will be a flood of piss and vinegar over this...but it's a machine...operate it right, or not at all.
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  10. #10
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    Wow, imagine that, higher risk if you are hit by a larger hunk of metal. Who woulda thunk it!
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  11. #11
    Headed to the Library... DC_Emily's Avatar
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    The real problem is that Americans have become too self-centered. Drivers figure if the SUV protects me, then why worry about anyone else? This applies not only to cyclists and pedestrians, but other drivers as well. Put a compact car up against an SUV, and it's rather clear who comes out alive. Trucks and large vehicles are big because their size serves a purpose. There's no reason for a family of four to drive a car that seats 8, I'm sorry. These things just arent' necessary!! Now if we all had a little concern for others, we could solve at least half of the world's problems.

  12. #12
    Senior Member FXjohn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DC_Emily
    The real problem is that Americans have become too self-centered. Drivers figure if the SUV protects me, then why worry about anyone else? This applies not only to cyclists and pedestrians, but other drivers as well. Put a compact car up against an SUV, and it's rather clear who comes out alive. Trucks and large vehicles are big because their size serves a purpose. There's no reason for a family of four to drive a car that seats 8, I'm sorry. These things just arent' necessary!! Now if we all had a little concern for others, we could solve at least half of the world's problems.

    Derr...let's get rid of all things not necessary: boats, TV sets, motorcycles, campers, jewelry, crock pots.
    Someone gets to decide if your house is too big, your car is too big, your bank account is too big etc.
    Comedian Bill Hicks once said, "Money can't buy happiness, but it can buy a jet ski, and you never see an unhappy person riding a jet ski."

  13. #13
    Bent_Rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by FXjohn
    Derr...let's get rid of all things not necessary: boats, TV sets, motorcycles, campers, jewelry, crock pots.
    Someone gets to decide if your house is too big, your car is too big, your bank account is too big etc.
    The moral is, use your freedom wisely. As the slogan goes, freedom isn't free.

    The only reason that the "nanny state" has to get involved is because someones freedom is stepping on someone elses toes. Live and let live is an old American tradition, but Americans have forgotten the "let live" part.

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    Again that book "High and Mighty" is a good one to read on SUVs. It's been out a few years so your library should have it.

  15. #15
    i am sure that i hate you spud's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chipcom
    Wow, imagine that, higher risk if you are hit by a larger hunk of metal. Who woulda thunk it!

    Hush you! common sense is not allowed in court or in this forum!
    putting the pi back in pirate!
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  16. #16
    commuter all star peregrine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DC_Emily
    The real problem is that Americans have become too self-centered. Drivers figure if the SUV protects me, then why worry about anyone else? This applies not only to cyclists and pedestrians, but other drivers as well. Put a compact car up against an SUV, and it's rather clear who comes out alive. Trucks and large vehicles are big because their size serves a purpose. There's no reason for a family of four to drive a car that seats 8, I'm sorry. These things just arent' necessary!! Now if we all had a little concern for others, we could solve at least half of the world's problems.
    that may be so, but i think everyone has the right to chose what to drive to feel safe... i'm not advertising SUV's (i drive a small eco car when i have to) but some people are really paranoid about safety. i figure, all it takes is a stupid, reckless, absent-minded driver even in the littlest car to do enough damage to a pedestrian or a cyclist. God help us all!

  17. #17
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    It's not so much the size of an SUV which causes the higher injury/deah rate, but the fact that they are higher and squarer in front than an ordinary car.

    Another factor was shown on a UK programme called Top Gear, presented by a well-known and often very funny petrolhead called Jeremy Clarkson. They tested a number of SUVs such as Grand Cherokee, Land Rover, etc. against cars of similar engine size. The SUVs consistently took longer to stop than the cars. The resultant damage to the lifelike figure used in the test was considerable.

  18. #18
    Mostly Harmless Dead Extra #2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atbman
    It's not so much the size of an SUV which causes the higher injury/deah rate, but the fact that they are higher and squarer in front than an ordinary car.
    Even if they changed that (and it worked), some people would still consider them to be tools of Satan. Hating SUVs is a religion.

  19. #19
    Bent_Rider
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    http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,1284,68809,00.html


    PARIS -- A band of eco-vigilantes is taking a firm but gentle stand against fast-growing SUV sales in France and Europe, deflating the tires on gas guzzlers in a protest against conspicuous waste.

    Members of a group called Les Dégonflés say they recently let the air out of tires on about half a dozen SUVs parked in the upscale VI arrondissement using bicycle pumps -- a technique that they say causes no lasting damage -- and plastered windshields with leaflets proclaiming that "nearly everyone needs an oxygen mask." A spokesman for the group said they hope to recruit new foot soldiers to the cause by demonstrating their technique in an internet broadcast next month.

  20. #20
    EARTH IS FULL. GO HOME. heckflosse's Avatar
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    That must be one of the most dangerous things the antis could do
    Nice to see the antis have done their research as usual
    Deflate the tyre too much and the weight of the vehicle will damage the tyre wall. Damaged tyre walls result in blowouts. Blowouts cause accidents, which these treehuggers are hopefully involved in.
    Aswell as that off-roaders carry pumps to inflate their tyres back up after off-roading (I carry a small petrol compressor) so all they're doing is making 'what they say' is dangerous in to something really dangerous

  21. #21
    Violin guitar mandolin
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dchiefransom
    That intent must be proven in order for criminal liability to be charged.
    Depends on the crime. Speeding is a crime whether or not one intended to speed. Have to look at the criminal statutes to determine the elements to see whether intent is a requirement.

  22. #22
    Hauja
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    Vehicles have no will of their own and therefore cannot be called killers, just as a *** will never jump up and shoot someone of its own volition or a knife stab someone on it's own etc .human action is required.

  23. #23
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    SUV's are killers-its official
    Yeah, we need more vehicles that pedestrians can just bounce off of......

    Speeding is a crime
    Actually, I think it's unlawful, not a crime, per se....

  24. #24
    Urban "Dirtbag" chennai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dead Extra #2
    Even if they changed that (and it worked), some people would still consider them to be tools of Satan. Hating SUVs is a religion.
    Sort of an offshoot of "intelligent design"? No one could actually design anything as stupid as an SUV, so it must have been done by a supernatural being?

  25. #25
    Urban "Dirtbag" chennai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James H Haury
    Vehicles have no will of their own and therefore cannot be called killers, just as a *** will never jump up and shoot someone of its own volition or a knife stab someone on it's own etc .human action is required.
    LOL. I remain a sucker for a good parody. It's why I love The Onion. Thanks for lightening the discussion.

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