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Last month, I wrote about the safety that the American consumer has seen with changes that have been forced on the auto industry as the result of an affective tort system.

Why Are Cars Safer?,Mike Bryant | May 14, 2010 10:00 AM

A solid example of why a strong tort system makes products safer by holding companies that don’t produce safe products responsible for the damage they create.

I then came upon a story about the governmental effort to make safer cars:

How The U.S. Government Killed The Safest Car Ever Built

It’s an interesting story of how politics and corporate interests were able to derail safety efforts. This comparison lays out the options for the consumer. What keeps them safest?

– Counting on the free market and corporations doing the right thing?

– Government regulation which is dependent on what the present administration cares about?

– A strong and fair civil justice system that allows people who have been injured the chance to take the most powerful company in front of a jury?

I think there should be a combination. But, with a goal toward long term product safety we have to have an unrestricted tort system to protect people when the first two fail.


  1. Comment I got in a email:

    Something that has always intrigued me about vehicle safety is the difference between safety technology we have, and safety technology we use.

    If you watch just a handful of open wheel and nascar racing, you're bound to see one of their trademark crashes. Just a month or two ago there was a spectacular crash in open wheel racing that shredded the car into nothingness. Despite that, the driver walked away ok. What saved him was the excellent design and quality of the safety methods in place - enough to save the driver's life going blindingly fast and crashing epicly hard.

    There is very little reason besides profit margin that some of those methods can't be integrated into typical vehicles.

  2. I appreciate all readers that take the time to comment. It is so true that there are so many safety measures that could save injuries and death.

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