From the National Center for Policy Analysis, on "Green But Unsafe" by John D. Graham in the Wall Street Journal, April 18, 2007.
Whatever the European Union's (EU) green vehicle plan's effectiveness is in slowing the pace of global warming, the regulatory impact assessment now being drawn up will need to consider a factor that is often overlooked: the safety of motorists.
More motorists die when two small cars collide than when two large cars collide. If both small and large cars are reduced in size, the decline in crush space adds risk for occupants in both vehicles, says Graham. Downsizing only the large cars is safer for the small cars, but it puts the occupants of large cars at greater risk in single-vehicle impacts (for example, when crashing into guardrails and trees) and in collisions with heavy trucks.