Tag Archives: IIHS crash tests

In underride, first point of contact with the truck is your windshield, then your head.

Just yesterday, as Isaac and I were nearing the end of our road trip from the Atlantic coast to the Pacific coast, Isaac said, “Maybe next time we make this trip, the trucks will look different and be a whole lot safer.”
I am very grateful that we are seeing significant progress in underride protection. And the gathering of almost 100 people at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety on August 29 has helped to continue the work of many people to make that possible.
Dawn King, president of the Truck Safety Coalition, with photos and video, describes the recent Underride Roundtable at the IIHS and why it was so important. Because a truck underride crash can happen to anyone. To AnnaLeah & Mary. To you or somebody you care about.
As Dawn explained,
“When you slide under a trailer your car’s safety features aren’t activated because your front bumper doesn’t hit anything. The first part of your car to come in contact with the trailer is your windshield. And then your head.”
“Someday soon the results of lots of peoples dreams will come to fruition. And it will happen because people from all walks of life sat down and talked. Trailer manufacturers, truck companies, safety experts, devastated families, government officials.”
Just what I’ve been hoping for:
After our crash, Jerry wrote to numerous trailer manufacturing companies asking them to voluntarily step up their underride guard standards. We got some positive response and stirred up interest in companies — to whom he also wrote — who purchase trailers–enlightening them as well. One of the manufacturers, Great Dane, invited us to tour their Research & Design Center on June 25, 2014.
Afterwards, I posted this: Underride Guards: Can we “sit down at the table together” and work this out? with this video: “Underride Guards: Now What?” to summarize what I saw as the frustrating lack of progress on improving underride guards and the seeming lack of communication among the various responsible parties with the authority to do something about it.
Of course, we weren’t the only ones frustrated with the inaction on what seems to be a drastically-needed change. When we took our 11,000+ signed petitions to DC in May 2014, we met with the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). At that time, they put it like this: “It is safer to run into a brick wall than into the back of a truck.” Yet, seemingly, nothing was being done about it. So we helped to organize the first and then the second Underride Roundtable.
Now something is being done about it.
We don’t have to let this continue to happen. We can do something to prevent deadly truck underride crashes. I’ve put together some ways that YOU, too, can help make trucks safer: http://annaleahmary.com/how-you-can-help/
See more video and media coverage here: Media Coverage of the Second Underride Roundtable

Stay tuned for results of the March 30 & 31 Side Underride/Guard Crash Tests at IIHS

We were privileged to attend the first crash test into the side of a semi-trailer at IIHS on March 30. The AngelWing side guard successfully prevented underride and Passenger Compartment Intrusion (PCI).

In other words, the people in the car would have been saved from catastrophic injuries!

The IIHS also crashed a car at 35 mph into the side of a trailer without a side guard. Stay tuned for the devastating results of that crash compared to the amazing difference with a side guard.

Underride Roundtable Planning Group members who attended the March 30, 2017, IIHS side guard crash test: Lois Durso, John Lannen, Andy Young, Marianne Karth, Jerry Karth, Perry Ponder, Robert Martineau

Previous 2012 side guard video from Perry Ponder, with his AngelWing invention:

Crash Test Videos of Semi Trailers Earning New IIHS Toughguard Award

Here is a Youtube video, posted by Cars-Trucks TV, which demonstrates the effectiveness of the improved rear underride guards designed by five of the major trailer manufacturers — Great Dane, Manac, Stoughton, Vanguard, and Wabash — from 2013 to 2017. They received a Toughguard award from IIHS.

They have proven that creative minds can come up with better underride protection. The cars are damaged from the crash, but underride is prevented and lives are preserved.


Small-overlap crash tests on pickup trucks; some don’t pass even tho’ they meet federal standards.

Ford F-150 Only Pickup Truck to Earn Top IIHS Safety Rating

Today from Care for Crash Victims:

Dear Care for Crash Victims Community Members:

An excellent article, showing a video of an IIHS crash test, conveys the importance of truck safety to workers and companies.

“Both consumers and businesses should pay attention to the IIHS tests, safety experts said.

“These ratings are terribly important,” said Clarence Ditlow, executive director of the Center for Auto Safety. “If I was a fleet manager, I would make sure I had my workers in the safest one. It also will save companies money over the long run.”

Beyond preventing injury, using safer vehicles reduces lost work time, workers’ compensation insurance claims and liability risk, Ditlow said.”  See


The National Safety Council’s 2015 Injury Facts reports that at work about 1,500 motor vehicle deaths and 100,000 injuries occur each year.  The NSC estimates the economic costs to be nearly $24 billion in 2013.

That is about 4 motor vehicle deaths at work per day in the U.S.A. today.

The silence on this tragically preventable problem of American workers from President Obama, presidential candidates, and the media is deafening.

When will enough be enough?



Cover of Car Safety Wars by Michael Lemov
Cover of Car Safety Wars by Michael Lemov

Give $1 for IIHS crash tests on 5/5/16–3 yrs & 1 day after our deadly UNDERRIDE crash

UPDATE 1 year later, December 29, 2016: We are again raising money for crash testing. Crash Test of Innovative Large Truck Side Guard Could Advance Side Underride Prevention Donate herehttps://www.fortrucksafety.com/

It will happen:

  • Cars will continue to collide with larger trucks and ride under them when the too-weak underride guard buckles (or because there is no underride protection on the side of the truck)– with deadly consequences.
  • NHTSA will propose truck underride rules which are weaker than could be possible.
  • The trucking industry, for the most part, will wait to find out what new standards might be required of them for underride protection systems in 3 years or more.
  • The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) will sponsor an Underride Roundtable at their Vehicle Research Center in Ruckersville, Virginia, on May 5, 2016.

What we hope will happen is that:

  • Cars will, in the near future, be better protected from deadly underride when they unfortunately & inevitably collide with larger trucks due to human error and road conditions because. . .
  • NHTSA will propose stronger underride rules which provide the best possible protection for travelers on the road because clear evidence will be available (from underride research & crash tests) for all to see that collisions with trucks should be more survivable than previously thought.
  • The trucking industry will take responsibility and voluntarily work to provide better underride protection for collisions with smaller passenger vehicles–without even waiting for improved federal requirements to go into effect.
  • The Underride Roundtable at IIHS, on May 5, 2016, will bring together experts in many fields who will propose solutions, which will contribute greatly toward realizing a vision of Zero Deaths and Zero Serious Injuries from truck underride crashes.

Be a part of this vision. Contribute to support underride research and crash tests.

Update, April 22, 2016: At this point, any donations given will not be for the crash test taking place at the Roundtable on May 5, but would be used for future research/testing.

You can do so here & now: https://www.fortrucksafety.com/


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For too long, this problem has been recognized but swept under a rug. It has not been considered a priority and money has not been earmarked to resolve the problem. If we don’t do something about it, who will?!

Watch the informative video below which I discovered yesterday from a 2012 investigative report on underride crashes:


And, out of the mouths of babes. . .