Road & Travel Magazine

Auto Advice & Tips
Auto Buyer's Guides
Car Care Maintenance
Climate Change News
Auto Awards Archive
Insurance & Accidents
Legends & Leaders
New Car Reviews
Planet Driven
Road Humor
Road Trips
RV & Camping
Safety & Security
Teens & Tots Tips
Tire Buying Tips
Used Car Buying
Vehicle Model Guide

Travel Channel
Adventure Travel
Advice & Tips
Airline Rules
Bed & Breakfasts
Cruises & Tours
Destination Reviews
Earth Tones
Family Travel Tips
Health Trip
Hotels & Resorts
Luxury Travel
Pet Travel
RV & Camping
Safety & Security
Spa Reviews
Train Vacations
World Travel Directory

Bookmark and Share - New Suv Safety Campaign

SUV Safety Campaign Launched Online

Driving a sport utility vehicle as if it were an ordinary passenger car can be fatal. In 2000, rollover crashes killed 9,873 occupants of passenger cars and light trucks, almost one-third of the total deaths of occupants of these types of vehicles. Despite these disturbing figures, more than four in 10 Americans think they are safer in an SUV than in a regular car, according to a new consumer survey.

To combat the tragic reality that these statistics represent, the 50 states and three jurisdictions today joined forces to launch the ESUVEE Safety Campaign. This $27 million, yearlong national education program consists of events and initiatives designed to reduce SUV rollovers, particularly among younger male drivers who have the highest incidence of such accidents.

The Campaign highlights critical tips for driving SUVs that can mean the difference between life and death: check your tire pressure monthly, don't overload your SUV, always wear your seatbelt, try to avoid abrupt maneuvers, and don't speed.

"Driving SUVs like ordinary cars invites disaster. Awareness of SUV safety - especially stopping rollovers - can mean survival to countless Americans," said Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal. "Smart drivers can save lives with some simple steps: avoid speeding, sudden maneuvers, and overloading. Our education campaign targets young men, who may be most vulnerable and most difficult to reach. If you think this message is hype, look at the numbers - thousands of young Americans killed in rollover crashes every year."

About The Campaign

Esuvee Mascot
The SUV Safety Campaign will use a mascot, ESUVEE, to engage the target audience of younger drivers.

The SUV Safety Campaign will use a mascot, ESUVEE, to engage the target audience of younger drivers. This previously undiscovered species makes its first appearance during today's campaign kickoff at New York's Central Park Zoo. New York City has officially declared January 31st to be SUV Safety Day. The 16-foot long, 11-foot wide and 10-foot tall ESUVEE will serve as the Campaign's focal point, appearing at events nationwide throughout this year. ESUVEE is prominently featured on the Campaign's web site,, a source of tips and information about safe operation and maintenance of SUVs. Throughout the year, the site will also provide information on upcoming events where ESUVEE will appear, such as SUV Safety Days in individual states. ESUVEE will also anchor a hard-hitting public relations campaign promoting SUV safety, including cinema, billboards, print, online and broadcast advertisements.

The concept of a safety campaign was conceived in December 2002, when the 50 states, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Territory of the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia reached a settlement with the Ford Motor Company. The agreement settled state lawsuits alleging that Ford's marketing practices misled consumers on how to drive, load and maintain Ford Explorers. As part of the settlement, Ford agreed to fund a $27 million consumer education campaign on SUV safety.

Lifesaving Safety Elements

"SUVs can give you a sense of invincibility, but if you lose control they become very dangerous due to their weight and high center of gravity," said David Champion, senior director, Auto Test Department, Consumer Reports. "To reduce SUV rollover risk, choose one that has not tipped in NHTSA's tests, has performed well in Consumer Reports tests, and is equipped with electronic stability control."

The Campaign aims to inform the public about the following critical safety elements that can help save lives:

Handling: SUVs have a higher center of gravity than passenger cars, which contributes to the higher risk of rollover. The chances of an SUV rollover are further increased by speeding, abrupt maneuvers, inattentiveness, tailgating, recklessness, aggressiveness or impaired driving.

Loading: According to the new consumer survey, nearly 50 percent of Americans do not know that overloading an SUV increases the risk of rollovers. The number of occupants, as well as the weight and distribution of cargo, raises a SUV's center of gravity, increasing the risk of rollover.

Tires: Tire size, pressure and maintenance are keys to SUV safety. Drivers should monitor each of these, and take them into account when loading an SUV.

Seat belts: Perhaps the most preventable cause of death in an SUV rollover is ejection from the vehicle. Eighty percent of those killed in SUV rollovers are unbelted.