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Rolling Over on Safety: The Hidden Failures of Belts in Rollover Crashes



Rolling Over on Safety: The Hidden Failures of Belts in Rollover Crashes

Flaws in the design and performance of safety belts leave vehicle occupants vulnerable to serious and often fatal injuries in rollover crashes, a new Public Citizen report shows. There is no federal safety standard for belt performance in rollover crashes, and the auto industry has done little to design belts to fully protect occupants in these crashes.

To read the full press release, click here

The report, Rolling Over on Safety: The Hidden Failures of Belts in Rollover Crashes, describes ways in which belt failures expose occupants to serious and deadly injury.

Due to the size of the report and appendices, they are posted in two sections below:

If you would like to download the entire report plus the appendices, click here
A brief summary of the report is available here

Public Citizen is calling Congress to enact vehicle safety measures in S.1072, a comprehensive approach to making rollover crashes survivable.  To learn more about S.1072, the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, and Efficient Transportation Equity Act (SAFETEA) click here.


On April 19, 2004, three parents of children killed or injured in belted SUV rollover crashes joined Public Citizen to expose the failure of belts in rollovers.

  • Syndi Ecker, of Atascadero, Calif., lost her daughter Amy in SUV rollover crash
  • Dr. Gordon Sudduth, of The Woodlands, Texas., is the father of Kacy who was severely injured in an SUV rollover
  • Miriam Cintron, or West Palm Beach, Fla., lost her daughter Angie in an SUV rollover

Take Action

  • Ask key decision makers to keep the safety in SAFETEA
    In February, the Senate passed key safety measures in SAFETEA, the highway funding bill, that would dramatically decrease needless deaths and injuries on American highways. Appeal to key decision makers in the House and Senate to keep these provisions in the final, conference version of the bill.  
  • Sign a petition to improve vehicle safety
    Congress and the National Highway Traffic Administration have gone too long without regulating the risk rollover crashes and poorly designed vehicles. Demand that they act now.
  • Email Congress – let them know you care about auto safety
    Vital legislation, the highway funding bill, is currently being considered by a conference of House and Senate members. Urge your Senators and Representative to support key safety provisions in the final bill.