• Oct 3, 2008

If you've been following the ongoing roof strength regulation saga, this will likely come as no surprise. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters has again asked for an extension to rewrite the government's vehicle roof strength rule. We've been reporting on this for more than three years, and the delays never seem to end (of course, we can assume the big cheese in Washington have more pressing issues on their plates these days). Rewriting the legislation set back in the 1970s isn't as simple as specifying stronger roof pillars. Beefing up the roof will add weight – potentially making a vehicle more top heavy and likely increasing the possibility of a rollover. The new rules will need to address these concerns, and take into account new safety technologies (curtain airbags, stability control, etc...) that are on our current-generation models. While each previous request for an extension included new deadline dates, this latest appeal didn't. A wise move considering the administration's track record on this issue.

[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]



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  • 13 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      Never fear. President Obama is going to fix everything. He's going to stop global warming, he's going to fix the health care problem, in fact, under President Obama, we'll never get sick so there's no need for health care. Under President Obama, everyone is going to have a high paying job. Heck, he's going to outlaw the middle class and we'll all be rich under his administration.

      On the other hand, that evil Bush and his Republican cohorts want to eat babies, kick puppies, and throw kittens in the river to drown.

      Give me a break. They're all the same pieces of sh*t and they're all cut from the same lying, greedy, power hungry piece of cloth. ALL OF THEM. Not just Dems or Republicans, ALL OF THEM are lying bast**ds. I'd rather trust a car salesman and I don't trust them any farther than I can throw one.

      The government keeps wanting more safety things on cars that increase weight while at the same time wanting better gas mileage. There has to be somewhere to meet in the middle.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Your absolutley correct!!! Thanks for the comment, I couldn't agree more!
        • 6 Years Ago
        I believe the exact quote you are looking for is:
        “I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal.”
      • 6 Years Ago
      You know, Studebaker integrated a roll bar into the design of the Avanti sport coupe all the way back in 1962. It was mounted to the chassis and was part of the B-pillar, then arched across the roof between the front and rear seats.

      Some thought it was a gimmick, but gimmick or not, it worked. I've seen some vintage rollover photos of Avantis, and they held up pretty darn well considering that the body of the car was made of thin-section fiberglass.

      If that sort of thing worked 46 years ago, why can't it be done today? I know it wouldn't add a whole lot of weight, because it didn't on the Avanti.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The solution is rather easy. The Bush Administration should not be deciding how to go about doing rollover protection (side-curtains, pillar strength/materials/etc). They should be mandating the safety itself. Something like:

      During rollover, vehicle structure should be able to support x lbs of weight in addition to the weight of the vehicle on any one pillar. Any deformation of the pillars or roof under this weight should not intrude into passenger space more than y inches or be within z inches of a typically size 95% male occupant. And finally, the car should be able to complete a 70' slalom with 5' offsets at some particular speed.

      Let the manufacturers figure out how to accomplish the goal. No one in politics should be writing the how or be concerned with the technology involved or necessary.
      -N
      • 6 Years Ago
      I like President Bush. He is an honorable man, which leads me to question why anyone with honor would want to be President. As for roll-over regulations, just make rolling over illegal unless you are an elected official and it means money in your pocket.
      s13hybrid
      • 6 Years Ago
      Here is a solution, lets just wear Helmets and have roll cages in all cars. Better handling, much safer, no need for airbags (just bar pads), looks cool (haha). You may be able to turn quicker so there is less need for exceleration (better gas mileage). This will keep a lot of "so comfy I am not paying attention to what I am doing" drivers off the road, so more increased safety.

      I don't know, this sounds like a win win solution.
      • 6 Years Ago
      deluge of partisan anti-bush comments in 3....2....
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'll just choose to buy cars that I know have excellent roof strength. GM's and Chryslers are not one of them.. the S40 I rolled repeatedly still had most of it's original shape and the pillars never really gave. LOVE Volvo..
        • 6 Years Ago
        Well, that's one approach. I just choose not to roll my vehicles, but whatever works. S40 is undeniably a great car - prefer the C30 though.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Someone just delete this entry and subsequent comments.
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