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Old 02-27-2016, 12:50 AM   #1
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Improving safety of motorhomes

Life involves risk. Many on this forum probably grew up riding in the back of pickups. Or your parents folded down the station wagon seat for trips.

I do wonder though if greater safety could be had without compromising the joy of RV travel.

Born free RVs have integrated roll bars.

Some smaller B+ & C's such as the Winnebago Trend include steel reinforced 3 point seatbelt mounts beyond just the front bucket seats.

Would we pay for more safety?

Could even smaller incremental improvements be had? Will motorhomes ever be required to pass more strict standards or will the insurance institute of highway safety start crash testing them to bring about the changes that have happened in cars?

The RV in this story from I-5 in Oregon is a 1998 Tioga Class C. Only a 5 year old survived.

Child in wreckage: 'She was screaming. And I said: Come on baby; come to me' | News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | KATU

This story has a better images.

http://nbc16.com/news/local/rv-semi-...st-area-on-i-5
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Old 02-27-2016, 01:23 AM   #2
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Unfortunately there are just somethings that "Safety" can not fix and this appears to be one of them.
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Old 02-27-2016, 08:52 AM   #3
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Short of something like a tank I don't think anything would have helped.
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Old 02-27-2016, 09:08 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by CampingCajun View Post
Short of something like a tank I don't think anything would have helped.
This even happens to tanks when they collide.

The facts of this case will probably be never known, but one can probably guess that the driver was distracted or had lost his situational awareness. He might have thought that the semi was entering the highway as he was and got tailgate fixation and didn't react to avoid.

If you travel down the highways, you'll see this happening frequently. Someone following a vehicle closely in front of them that exits and they follow along then suddenly come to the realization that isn't where they are going and swerve back into traffic.

Rear end/Pile up collisions occur when drivers are not paying attention, driving too fast and don't drive ahead...that is looking down the road beyond just a few car lengths in front of them to spot potential hazards and situations that they need to react to now.
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Old 02-27-2016, 09:24 AM   #5
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You pose a good question. In addition to the existing safety features in vehicles, I suggest improving the operator skills. People are allowed to drive without any training, and many are also allowed to get away with disobeying basic rules of the road.

A functioning society is based on voluntary compliance with rules and laws but this doesn't always occur; that's why we have police. However, in addition to police addressing really serious things, I wonder if they could be scheduled to spend just one hour a month - sitting at intersections where people run red lights and stop signs, stopping really unsafe drivers, etc. etc. etc. (my list goes on...). If such practice could be adopted, word of mouth between the driving population might just bring a significant reduction in such behavior.

And, I suggest some of the new cars actually promote distracted driving with lane departure warnings, automatic braking cruise control, touch screens that take many inputs to change HVAC settings, etc.

End of rant... there ain't such a thing as utopia (plus maybe too much coffee this morning).

Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderso View Post
...Could even smaller incremental improvements be had? Will motorhomes ever be required to pass more strict standards or will the insurance institute of highway safety start crash testing them to bring about the changes that have happened in cars?...
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Old 02-27-2016, 09:36 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by George Schweikle View Post

And, I suggest some of the new cars actually promote distracted driving with lane departure warnings, automatic braking cruise control, touch screens that take many inputs to change HVAC settings, etc.

End of rant... there ain't such a thing as utopia (plus maybe too much coffee this morning).

X2, If a driver needs parking assist, lane departure warnings, cruise shut off and auto braking, maybe they shouldn't have a license.

AND, I'm only on my second cup.
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Old 02-27-2016, 10:04 AM   #7
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I know this rest stop. This is a exit ramp to the rest stop. Trucks regularly just pull off the ramp to the right of the road ( past the fog line ) and stop to sleep as the rest area can be full. The drive lane is and was open. Sadly this person must have not been paying attention ,leaving the freeway on the exit ramp and without thinking lined up off the roadway thinking the truck was in the road and moving. This happens all the time to police as they are on the side of the road and rammed from behind. Like lemmings people seem to be drawn to the back of the parked car

Unlike a class A this motorhome was a C built on a van that has even more " safety " built in , but nothing helps when you run into the back of a high trailer at 50 ? Miles per hour! very sad situation.
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Old 02-28-2016, 02:02 AM   #8
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No disagreement that the added assistant features can be a diminishing return and that attentive driving is also important as shown by this particular accident. I'm less experienced than several on this site but have managed to be in only one accident in 30 years. That was due to someone running a red light and side impact striking our car at 45 mph in an intersection. I and our kids likely wouldn't have walked away from that accident in our Class C.

What I'm wondering though is what safety features should be added to Motorhomes by manufacturers. By this I mean occupant safety/injury protection features that go beyond just the cab area. I don't think I could realistically do much for our '08 View. Or could I with the dinette area such as a retrofit to match that from the Winnebago Trend that has steel reinforced seat backs, higher cushions and 3 point belts. Hmm...

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Old 02-28-2016, 06:26 AM   #9
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How about we start with air bags for the driver and p[assenger of Class A's!
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Old 02-28-2016, 07:14 AM   #10
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our Super C doesnt have air bags either, Freightliner just started adding them as an option in 2016 for the mid sized business class trucks. I feel a little better driving the Super C then an A, not that the hood and engine up front will help a lot, but it makes me feel better.
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Old 02-29-2016, 10:08 AM   #11
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rv's are involved in less than 1 percent of all accidents. almost always without fatalities.
fatalities are the exception, not the rule. this is because of the size of the vehicle, and the age and experience of most rv drivers. give them some of the credit.
yes rv's could be made safer. air bags would be great. seat belt alarms would help. almost all injuries are from failure to utilize the seat belts
stricter enforcement of speed limits would help.
drive with the trucks instead of competing with them for a space on the road.
there are many things that would improve the overall safety of rving,
but its the individual that is going to make the difference.
resolve to drive safer. drive a reasonable speed. dont tailgate.
dont think you have to drive 600 miles a day.
stop when you are overly tired. dont drive agressively .
use some COMMON SENSE.
i drive over 25000 miles a year in my motorhome. i see all kind of drivers.
i drive to get there in one piece. a car length is not that important to me.
remember the precious cargo you have riding with you.
and last of all, have a good day by making it good for everyone on the road.
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Old 02-29-2016, 10:21 AM   #12
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I like the idea of air bags and roll bars. and 3 point belts in more than just driver and passenger seats up front. (considering I would imagine most MHs are really just thin wood frames wrapped in fiberglass or aluminum or something and will crack open like an eggshell if you roll the thing)

I also think an automatic fire suppression system inside the fridge compartment and possibly engine compartment too would probably be a cheap way to increase occupant safety a bit.
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Old 02-29-2016, 10:28 AM   #13
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from the looks of the pictures if they were in a small car it would be the same
feel sorry for them but hitting a semi like that aint good
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Old 02-29-2016, 11:09 AM   #14
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What I find ironic is that in 10 years someone is going to happen upon this thread and say "I remember those days!" May of the cars sold this year have the capability to drive them selves in some form or fashion.

Like cars, I think the next major safety improvement to RVs is going to be removing the human driver.

Ironically, the "older RV drivers" who might very well be the safest today become the most dangerous on a street filled with autonomous cars.
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