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NHTSA Standards Inadequate?

Discussion in 'Model S' started by rammer91, Oct 28, 2015.

  1. rammer91

    rammer91 Member

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    Saw an interesting piece this morning about front seats that pass the NHTSA "pull test" which, in all practicality, is useless in determining whether or not a front seat will collapse backward if you are rear ended, potentially killing a child sitting in the back seat.

    NHTSA requirements for car crash tests inadequate for testing fatalities from car seats - CBS News

    I know the Model S is a very safe car, and I know one can't protect from all injuries or fatalities in a car accident, but I was struck by the fact that your standard metal-frame, card-table chair would actually pass the pull test, indicating it's not really useful for determining safety in a real life scenario. Even more shocking is that this issue has gone all the way back to the early 90's and nothing has changed since then.

    I'm curious if anybody has any insights into how safe the Model S against this sort of "seat collapse" scenario?

    Loving my 85D.
     
  2. JohnQ

    JohnQ Active Member

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    I thought that this quote from the agency was particularly well thought out:
    Added emphasis is mine.
     
  3. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    #3 Gizmotoy, Oct 28, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2015
    I have a 15 month old, and now I'm teary at work. "I thought maybe she had just fallen asleep." :crying: That family's story is terrible. Further argument for the center seating position, I suppose.

    This one less so, in response to investigation showing more children killed by seat failures than by the huge defective airbag recall:
    I get that the situations are different, but they're not that different. The result of both defects being dead humans, and the difference being one violated a current rule and another didn't. I'm not sure I buy that one of those is an apple and the other is a hand grenade, as the NHTSA put it.
     
  4. EarlyAdopter

    EarlyAdopter Active Member

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    I'm glad there are at least two other agencies testing cars, and hopefully seats - IIHS and NCAP.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Fortunately, the Model S has had at least one real world test of a major rear end collision, in this case getting hit from behind by an 18 wheeler and knocked 100 feet off the road up an embankment, and came through fine. No mention of drivers seat collapse and in fact he was even able to drive it home, while the semi was disabled and had to be towed.
     
  5. Vitold

    Vitold Member

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    #5 Vitold, Oct 29, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2015
    After watching the video, I'm thinking that maybe non-folding seats on Model X maybe safer than if they were folding. It's incredible that seat standards are lacking like that. I wonder if European standards are the same?

    From another article I found:

     
  6. Vitold

    Vitold Member

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    If seats collapse during rear barrier impact crash test required by FMVSS 301, yet pass FMVSS 207 seat test, it is enough proof that FMVSS207 is inadequate and needs to be changed.
     
  7. JohnQ

    JohnQ Active Member

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    Wouldn't argue with that at all. They would simply need to demonstrate that injuries are the result of the failed seat alone and have sufficient data points that the statistics are reliable. Not that it should be too hard to do but without that correlation the industry could push back based on the requirements. Speaking callously, it's not just about the fact that the seats will fail, causing injury, but that the cost of the regulation exceeds the benefits of it being in place. Speaking personally, if that was my child I'd be driving this as hard as possible, including using the press to bully the NHTSA into a change and creating negative publicity for the auto companies.
     

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