You may have suffered severe injuries, even catastrophic injuries, in a car accident. This may be all the more frustrating if your vehicle happened to be highly rated for safety. Unfortunately, what a lot of California drivers don’t know is that the five-star safety rating system established by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is not always accurate.

NHTSA’s safety ratings may be outdated

One report published in October 2019 criticizes the NHTSA for not updating its rating system. In particular, the agency has not added ratings for emerging vehicle safety features like pedestrian detection. The organization has been called to add new crash test procedures and perform more of these tests before rating vehicles.

Europe, Asia and Latin America all surpass the U.S. when it comes to the number of crash tests. The report states that Europe tests its vehicles four times more than the U.S. does. The NHTSA, for its part, has promised to make changes to its crash tests. It has even promised to make crash test dummies that better enable one to analyze how certain crashes affect drivers and passengers.

Drivers need more real-world data

If you took NHTSA’s safety rating into account when buying your vehicle, chances are that the star rating wasn’t all you relied on in your decision. Drivers need to see how vehicles hold up in real-world incidents, and this is where the Fatality Analysis Reporting System comes in. Experts want this data to be made more accessible to drivers.

Getting legal help

Of course, even the safest vehicle cannot prevent a crash caused by a negligent driver, such as a drunk, drowsy or distracted driver. If you want to pursue a personal injury case, then you may want a lawyer to evaluate it first. This may be especially helpful if English is not your first language.