New NHTSA rule requires stronger roofs

  • 05-May-2009 05:39 EDT

Rollovers are the deadliest type of crashes in the U.S., accounting for about 10,000 deaths annually, according to NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration). A new final rule announced by the agency April 30 will reduce that number, the agency says. The rule calls for automakers to ensure that each side of a light vehicle's roof can withstand a force three times the vehicle's weight. The current rule on roof strength for light vehicles up to 6000 lb requires one side of the vehicle to withstand a force of 1.5 times the vehicle's weight. The regulation, the phased implementation of which begins in 2012, for the first time applies a roof strength standard (1.5 times the vehicle's weight) on vehicles between 6000 and 10,000 lb.

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