[extropy-chat] Real Extropians don't drive SUVs

J. Andrew Rogers andrew at ceruleansystems.com
Thu Aug 19 19:56:20 UTC 2004

> There are things inherently unsafe about many SUVs. They have a higher 
> tendency to roll over (not just due to driver ignorance). They also
make the 
> road less safe for non-SUV owners by obstructing their view.

There are many things inherently unsafe about EVERY type of vehicle --
engineering is about trade-offs.  To reverse your assertion above, small
sedans are inherently less safe because they give poor visibility.  All
you are saying is that $VEHICLE is the safest of all vehicles iff the
entire universe is engineered to be optimal for the design of $VEHICLE.
 Welcome to the real world.

> So it is a little more than just "use wisely". If you take an excellent 
> driver and have them drive a sedan and an SUV, they will have more 
> roll-overs and be more unsafe in the SUV even though their driving
skill is 
> excellent.

You take your Prius on a gravel highway up in the mountains and I'll
take the unused Bronco sitting in my driveway.  The Prius is inherently
less safe even if you never see another vehicle.  Which would you rather
be in if you hit a moose or cattle or got stuck in a rainstorm on that road?

There is a hell of a lot more to safety than a moderately higher
probability of rollovers, which are a tiny portion of the bigger
calculus.  For a skilled driver who understands the parameters of an
SUV, a rollover is not a major concern.  Of the rollovers I've seen
around here (more than half of which were sedans), the SUVs generally
appeared to be the aforementioned soccer moms that like to play Pole
Position while yapping on the phone and putting on make-up.  Their
number was coming up anyway (in terms of having an accident), the choice
of an SUV just helped parameterize the mode.

j. andrew rogers

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