Traffic accidents can involve a wide variety of motor vehicles. Different types of vehicles vary in the types of issues that could be likely to come up in accidents involving them. For example, here in Louisiana, it appears there is a fair amount of variation in how likely seat belt use is among different vehicles.
Recently, the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission did a study on seat belt use in the state. Among the things the study looked at was the rate of driver and front passenger seat belt use in cars, SUVs, pickup trucks and vans. The study found pickup trucks to have the lowest rate among these four vehicle types. Here are the driver/front-passenger seat belt use rates that the study determined:
- Vans - 92 percent.
- SUVs- 90 percent.
- Cars – 89 percent.
- Pickup trucks- under 82 percent.
- All vehicles overall – 87 percent.
Why do you think seat belt use in pickup trucks is so much lower than that in other vehicles here in Louisiana?
Whether vehicle occupants are wearing seat belts can be a very impactful matter in motor vehicle crashes. It can have major implications for the safety of the occupants. It can also have significant ramifications for insurers. It could impact the severity of injuries coming out of crashes (which could affect claim size) and what sorts of issues arise in accident claims.
Given the differences the various vehicles out on the road have, including differences in occupant seat belt use rates, what types of vehicles a given motor vehicle crash involves is among the many things that could influence what claims issues an insurer has to navigate in connection to the crash. What issues come up for an insurer over motor vehicle accident claims could impact many things, including the likelihood of a claims dispute arising. When any legal dispute comes up regarding an auto insurance claim, an insurance company may want to promptly reach out for experienced legal guidance on what can be done to protect its interests during the course of the dispute.
Source: Insurance Journal, “Report: Seatbelt Use Lags Among Louisiana Truck Drivers, Passengers,” Oct. 30, 2017