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Study shows that side underride guards could save lives

Each year, Missouri residents are seriously injured or killed in collisions with large trucks. Some of these crashes occur when people's cars go underneath the sides of the trucks, crushing the cars underneath. A study has demonstrated that the installation of side underride guards would help to prevent these often deadly accidents.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, side underride guards would provide as much protection to cars as rear underride guards do. Rear underride guards are installed on the back of the trucks to prevent cars from traveling underneath them when the cars are behind the trucks, and regulations are being considered by federal lawmakers to make them mandatory. Side underride guards are not yet being looked at, but they would potentially save many lives.

The IHHS conducted two crashes in a test. In the first one, a car was crashed into a side underride guard while traveling at 35 miles per hour. While the guard bent, it stopped the car from traveling underneath the truck. In the second crash, a car was crashed into a truck that had a fiberglass sheet that was designed to improve aerodynamics but not to prevent cars from traveling underneath. In that crash, part of the roof was sheared off as the car was wedged beneath the truck.

People who are the victims of negligent truck drivers who pull their trucks over the top of their vehicles may be permanently disabled or killed. Injured victims and the families of people who are killed in large truck crashes may recover compensation for their losses by filing civil lawsuits against the drivers and their employers. Personal injury lawyers may review the facts and circumstances in order to determine whether or not potential plaintiffs have valid claims.

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