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Guide to Buying a Safe Family Car from Portland Car Accident Attorneys


You’ve looked at all the latest models. They come with every gadget and gizmo imaginable. Nowadays, cars, SUV’s and even pickup trucks have sound systems to rival any movie theater, satellite navigation systems that could have been put together at NASA, and seats that keep you warm in a blizzard and cool in a heat wave. Climate inside the vehicle can be controlled to the nearest degree, and it can be set to keep the hot-blooded driver chilled, and the chilly passenger as warm as toast.

These are considerations when deciding the best vehicle to buy for your family, certainly. However, something that should be read by anyone thinking of getting a new family vehicle, even before the glossy brochures at the dealership, are the latest car safety reports. The discerning driver will put family safety ahead of 0 to 60 mph times, and a responsible Portland car accident lawyer would advise any new buyer that flashy cars and some top-heavy SUV’s, while they might look good, don’t provide the kind of protection a parent would want for their child in the event of an accident.

With that in mind, what safety features would a Portland car accident lawyer recommend family and friends to look for when choosing the next family motor? Fortunately, manufacturers have come up with some innovative new safety features. The following would be excellent additions to the equipment on any car using Oregon roads:

  • Stability control. Especially important if you’re considering SUV’s, which have a greater rollover risk than passenger cars, this feature helps drivers maintain control of their vehicle in emergency situations.
  • Electronic steering control. Along with traction control and all wheel drive, these features improve traction when road conditions are poor, and are considered especially important in areas like Oregon that are prone to occasional heavy snowfall or lots of rain.
  • Roll stability control. Another device that reduces risks of rollover in extreme cornering situations, this feature would be an important addition in tall vehicles with a high center of gravity. The system uses a gyroscopic sensor and works with the electronic steering control to brake one or more wheels and reduce engine power in an emergency situation.
  • Automatic crash notification. In the event your vehicle is involved in a collision, some manufacturers install systems that automatically notify emergency services of a crash.
  • Blind spot detection. Portland car accident lawyers frequently deal with cases where the driver simply didn’t see the other vehicle—particularly in the case of motorcycles—because it was in their blind spot. With the blind spot detection feature, sensors constantly monitor the vehicle’s sides and rear and notifies the driver via lights mounted in the rear view or side view mirrors of vehicles approaching from behind.
  • Night vision. Oregon drivers often need the services of a Portland car accident lawyer because they didn’t see animals, pedestrians or obstructions in the road ahead in time, because of poor lighting or bad visibility. By generating a video image in real time on a control panel or in the heads-up display, night vision prevents accidents by alerting drivers to potential danger faster than if just relying on headlights.
  • Forward collision warning. Drivers can have lapses in concentration and fail to notice when the vehicle they are following suddenly slows or stops. The forward collision warning feature monitors the relative speed and following distance to the vehicle in front of you. If your vehicle gets too close, an audible or visual signal is activated to alert the driver. In some cases, seat belt pre-tensioners will be activated and airbag systems will be pre-charged.

An experienced Portland car accident lawyer sees accidents every day that cause injuries and financial loss to those involved. Many of the safety systems mentioned above could prevent the resultant pain and frustration, or at the very least, diminish their effects. When considering your next family vehicle, ask the dealer which, if any, of these safety devices will be available in the car, SUV or truck he or she is trying to sell you. If you are in an accident, and you believe it might have been caused by a defect in the car, call our office at (503) 222-4411 or use our contact form to tell our personal injury lawyers about your accident and start discussing your legal options.