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Whiplash injury claim news

Thatcham praise Volvo and Saab safety systems

Thatcham have revealed that Volvo and Saab are worthy of recognition after their latest safety tests showed that they are the experts when it comes to protecting drivers from sustaining whiplash and needing to make subsequent whiplash injury claims.

This test concentrated on the ability of car seats to protect their occupants from suffering whiplash during rear-end collisions, the most common cause of this particular neck injury.

Overall, 16% of vehicles tested gained the rating of 'good' and an appalling 36% were rated as 'poor'.

Some car manufacturers, namely Daihatsu, Kia, Porsche and Suzuki, did not supply some or all of their seats for testing.

Among those named and shamed were the BMW 1 and 3 series, BMW X5, Citroen C4, Lexus GS, Toyota Verso and Peugeot 1007.

However, these cars that received a poor rating from the Thatcham test have previously been awarded a full five stars in Euro NCAP impact tests, which simulated just front and side-impact collisions.

These findings were confirmed by studies carried out by insurance companies who found that both Volvo and Saab still regard reducing the amount of whiplash injuries suffered as a priority. Their reactive head restraints and energy absorbing seats show up to a 50% reduction in the amount of whiplash injuries reported.

When the sheer amount of car accident claims made are considered, Thatcham believes that whiplash injury compensation totals over 1 billion every year and, as a result, motorists have to pay an extra 40 for their car insurance premiums to help cover costs.

The independent testing body are continuing to encourage all vehicle manufacturers to fit safer seats which provide adequate protection against whiplash injuries.

They commented that, "Many manufacturers introduced designs that attempted to reduce whiplash injuries, but the test showed many simply do not work."

Results from recent model tests show that manufacturer are beginning to take these injuries more seriously and are designing car seats accordingly to protect drivers.

For example, Mercedes Benz has introduced the first truly active head restraint which uses an onboard crash sensor. This is proposed to drastically cut down the amount of car crash injuries suffered.

Thatcham are hoping that other manufacturers will follow suit and that safety features to help reduce whiplash injuries occurring during low-speed rear-end collisions will also be introduced before the year is out in a bid to increase safety for motorists and subsequently decrease the amount of whiplash injury claims that are made each year.

For further information about Thatcham and their whiplash injury safety tests please see

Click here for more information about making a whiplash injury claim.