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Media Advisory: NHTSA Sport Utility Vehicle Crash Test Open to Press/Photographers

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government

Media Advisory: NHTSA Sport Utility Vehicle Crash Test Open to Press/Photographers

February 23, 1998

Monday, February 23, 1998
Contact: Mike Russell
Tel. No. (202) 366-9550

Credentialed reporters and photographers are invited to cover the next crash test in NHTSA's series involving light trucks and vans (LTVs) and passenger cars at 1 p.m., Monday, March 2, at the Vehicle Research Test Center (VRTC) in East Liberty, Ohio.

WHO: NHTSA engineers will brief on test procedures.

WHAT: Side crash test of a 1998 Ford Explorer; the target vehicle will be a 1998 Honda Accord.

WHEN: 1 p.m., Monday, March 2

WHERE: NHTSA's Vehicle Research Test Center East Liberty, Ohio

Because of space limitations, news media representatives planning to cover the testing should confirm attendance to NHTSA Public Affairs by 12 noon, Friday, Feb. 27. Because of safety requirements, press must be on site by 12:30 p.m., Monday, March 2, for escort to the test area. They will be required to stay in place until the crash test are concluded -- shortly after 1 p.m. After a brief safety inspection of site, press will be able to move to the crashed vehicles for aftermath photos. Vehicles used in the first of this NHTSA LTV-passenger car test series, which involved a 1998 Chevrolet S-10 pickup truck and a 1998 Honda Accord in a side crash and which took place Feb. 20, also will be available for photos.

VRTC is located 45 miles northwest of Columbus, Ohio, between Marysville and Bellefontaine (1-1/2 hours from the Port Columbus Airport). Take I-270 to Exit 17, take U.S. 33 toward Marysville. Exit at Route 347, East Liberty, turn right at first road (TRC Drive) and proceed to gatehouse for clearance and escort to parking area. The VRTC telephone is (937) 666-2011. A map will be faxed on request. Fact sheets and VRTC brochures will be available.

The VRTC crash testing is a key part of NHTSA's comprehensive assessment of LTV safety issues. LTVs include sport utility vehicles (SUVs), pickup trucks, and minivans. Engineers are staging typical collisions between the vehicles to examine so-called "incompatibilities"--or mismatches in vehicle design--that may increase the severity and consequence of crashes. LTVs now represent 34 percent of the total U.S. fleet, and, as a class, are considered more aggressive than passenger cars.

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