Electric cars were explicitly made to minimise the effects of airborne pollutants that are exasperating the climate crisis. However, electric cars may also be effective in helping another common fatality: car accidents. Traffic-related fatalities are the eighth leading cause of death, but that number could soon plummet with a total adoption of electric cars in the future.
Safety Exceptions for the Quiet Smart Car
As cars become smarter, they also become quieter, which can cause separate issues related to car accidents. When driven at low speeds, like when reversing or parking, electric cars are barely audible and are more likely to cause fatalities. For example, if you’re reversing and a pedestrian can’t hear your car, they’re more likely to walk into your moving vehicle.
Regulation EU 540/2014 states that all hybrid and quiet electric vehicles must be fitted with an Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System (AVAS) by July 2021. If you’re a pedestrian who’s been hit by an electric car that doesn’t have an AVAS, an auto accident attorney, like Bringarder who are based in Charleston, can help you seek more in damages than what you would have otherwise received if you were hit by a negligent driver.
Although research is limited as to the actual effects of smart cars on road safety, the few tests that have been done seem to confirm that electric cars make driving safer in the following ways.
One of the aspects of life with an electric car, especially on long journeys, is the multiple extended breaks needed to charge the vehicle. Instead of driving into the petrol station, filling up, and immediately driving away, electric car owners are expected to wait while their battery charges. That extra half an hour to hour break allows drivers to recuperate and stretch.
Regular petrol-powered cars typically have one internal combustion engine to produce power, but electric cars often have two or more electric motors. This allows for a process called torque vectoring, which makes the vehicle safer because it allocates power to specific car operations. If the vehicle knows it’s turning, it can activate a stability control system to prevent hydroplaning on wet roads.
The six crash evaluations and the other two factors IIHS often considers include:
• Driver-side small overlap front
• Passenger-side small overlap front
• Moderate overlap front
• Roof strength
Let’s use the Ford Mustang Mach-E and Volvo XC40 Recharge to determine how well electric cars tend to do in safety tests. The Mach-E, which earned Top Safety Pick designation, comes with automatic emergency brakes that earned a Superior rating. It also has good headlamps.
The XC40 Recharge took it one step further by earning a Top Safety Pick+ designation. It earned a good score across all evaluations except the crash prevention systems, which earned Superior and Advanced scores. Since most electric cars are fitted with collision avoidance systems, they are typically rated high in safety. More advanced systems rate cars even higher.
If you do get in an accident, your rate of injury is 40% lower than for identical petrol-powered vehicles. The reason for this is that electric cars weigh a lot more due to the inclusion of batteries. Research shows that if you’re in a heavier vehicle, you have less force exerted on your body in a crash, which leads to fewer injuries and deaths from serious accidents.
Aggressive drivers tend to rev their engines and change speeds more frequently, leading to a lot of wasted fuel. Since electric cars are concerned with energy conservation (as batteries have a limited amount of charge), they will stick to the speed limit under normal circumstances. Electric vehicles will also save energy by reducing the amount of braking and stop-start driving.