Roof Crush is a Major Cause of Rollover Deaths and Injuries

When roofs crush in a rollover, the survival space for occupants is greatly limited or eliminated altogether, so that the heads and spines of occupants contact the roof. In addition, roof crush can open ejection portals-- making windows and the windshield area very large and leading to ejection of occupants, which is frequently fatal. Don Friedman and Carl Nash, based on their years of crash investigations, have estimated that as many as one-half of seriously injured ejected occupants could have received their initial injuries as a consequence of roof crush.

The auto industry has tried to obscure the engineering principles which would have emphasized maintaining survival space by arguing in court and to NHTSA that occupants "dive" into the roof. This ignores the obvious fact that if the seat structures and safety belts held occupants in place during a roll, and if the roof was strong enough to withstand the weight of the car, the head and spine of occupants would be safe. In addition, safety engineer and attorney Don Slavik has shown through accident investigations that injuries among occupants directly correlate with the location of roof intrusion in the vehicle. That is to say, where there is roof crush, occupants are injured, and where someone is uninjured, there is little-or-no roof crush.

Copyright © 2014 Public Citizen. Some rights reserved. Non-commercial use of text and images in which Public Citizen holds the copyright is permitted, with attribution, under the terms and conditions of a Creative Commons License. This Web site is shared by Public Citizen Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation. Learn More about the distinction between these two components of Public Citizen.


Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation

 

Together, two separate corporate entities called Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation, Inc., form Public Citizen. Both entities are part of the same overall organization, and this Web site refers to the two organizations collectively as Public Citizen.

Although the work of the two components overlaps, some activities are done by one component and not the other. The primary distinction is with respect to lobbying activity. Public Citizen, Inc., an IRS § 501(c)(4) entity, lobbies Congress to advance Public Citizen’s mission of protecting public health and safety, advancing government transparency, and urging corporate accountability. Public Citizen Foundation, however, is an IRS § 501(c)(3) organization. Accordingly, its ability to engage in lobbying is limited by federal law, but it may receive donations that are tax-deductible by the contributor. Public Citizen Inc. does most of the lobbying activity discussed on the Public Citizen Web site. Public Citizen Foundation performs most of the litigation and education activities discussed on the Web site.

You may make a contribution to Public Citizen, Inc., Public Citizen Foundation, or both. Contributions to both organizations are used to support our public interest work. However, each Public Citizen component will use only the funds contributed directly to it to carry out the activities it conducts as part of Public Citizen’s mission. Only gifts to the Foundation are tax-deductible. Individuals who want to join Public Citizen should make a contribution to Public Citizen, Inc., which will not be tax deductible.

 

To become a member of Public Citizen, click here.
To become a member and make an additional tax-deductible donation to Public Citizen Foundation, click here.