Charleston, SC, December 01, 2012 --(PR.com
)-- With the holiday season arriving, Mama’s Used Cars in Charleston, South Carolina is providing 10 safety checks consumers should perform prior to purchasing a car, truck, van or SUV.
First, look at crash-test ratings provided by the insurance industry. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is the leading research group in the industry, performing a series of crash tests including frontal- and side-impact. Second, compare the results with government crash-test ratings. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration evaluates full frontal and side impact crash test results and designates each vehicle a rating of up to five stars.
Also, look at rollover resistance results, which are also tested by the NHTSA. Taller vehicles are more likely to roll over due to the higher center of gravity. The Rollover Resistance Rating is also measurable by up to five stars.
Consumers should choose vehicles, especially SUVs, that offer electronic stability control (ESC). ESC helps keep the vehicle under control and on the correct path while going around a corner. The system can apply the brakes if the SUV starts to slide or skid. Another recommended system is an antilock brake system (ABS). ABS stops the wheels from locking up during a hard stop, keeping the vehicle straight.
Speaking of braking, check out the vehicle’s accident avoidance features. Research the time it takes a vehicle to stop, emergency handling, acceleration, visibility and seat comfort.
There are four key areas to examine on the vehicle’s interior. First are the air bags. Take note of not only how many there are but how sophisticated the systems are as well. The number of sensors often varies by vehicle. Next, check out the safety belts. Three-point lap-and-shoulder belts offer the most protection in a crash. Test them out for comfort. Third, ensure the head restraints will properly guard against whiplash neck injuries. They should be tall enough to cushion the head above the top of the spine.
Finally, check all child safety measures. Ensure car seats are properly installed and secure, look for power-window locks or switches, and test that the door locks are functioning well.