If you drive around Fall River or the South Shore at night, then you may want to read this article carefully.
A recent study of headlight quality performed by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) revealed that of the 21 different SUVs tested, not one earned the agency’s highest safety rating.
In fact, only the Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, Mazda CX-3 and Hyundai Tucson earned acceptable ratings. All the other SUVs earned either a marginal or poor rating.
This test came just a mere months following a similar study conducted by the IIHS, which honed in on the top-selling mid-size car models. Of the 31 cars tested there, only the Toyota Prius earned a top rating.
LUXURY ISN’T THAT IT’S CRACKED UP TO BE
Some of the cards that ranked the lowest in both SUV and mid-size tests were high-tech or luxury models.
The advanced headlight options that are found within these models (such as headlights that shift as you turn the wheel) did nothing to improve ratings.
So, why are more and more vehicles failing to perform as they should?
“Some manufacturers, they’re more concerned about the styling of the headlights and the branding of the vehicle than necessarily how much light is putting on the road,” said Matt Brumbelow of the IIHS.
However, change might come soon. As early as next year, IIHS will only give its Top Safety award to vehicles with headlights that manage to earn an Acceptable or Good rating, meaning manufacturers might soon make sweeping changes.
THE TRUTH ABOUT HEADLIGHTS AND ACCIDENTS IN FALL RIVER, MA
Nearly half of all traffic accidents resulting in fatalities occur either at night, dawn or dusk. With such poor ratings on most car models’ headlights systems, it can be incredibly difficult to see further than 50 feet down the road, which becomes remarkably dangerous when you’re traveling at 60 miles per hour.
At that speed, you’d have just a fraction of a second to react to any obstacles you may come across in the road.