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Tesla S not among IIHS safety picks

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has given three full-size cars its Top Safety Pick Plus designation. However, South Carolina residents may be surprised to learn that the Tesla S was not on the list. The honor was given to the Lincoln Continental, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class sedan and the Toyota Avalon. In addition to the Tesla S, the Ford Taurus and Chevrolet Impala were also denied the top rating.

A representative from the IIHS said that the Tesla S did not have a strong enough safety belt. It also had trouble during the small overlap front test that simulates the effects of crashes like a car hitting a telephone pole. The Tesla model tends to get attention because of its price point and because it is an electric vehicle. There are a total of five tests that a car must pass in order to receive the designation.

In addition to the small overlap test, a car must pass the moderate overlap front and side test as well as tests for roof strength. Head restraints must also pass muster to receive the top safety grade, and a vehicle's headlight must have a good or acceptable rating. While a vehicle of any size with a Top Safety Pick Plus rating is among the safest on the road, larger cars with this rating are generally safer than smaller cars.

Even the safest of vehicles may not provide complete protection for people who are injured in an accident caused by a negligent driver. People who are harmed in such a manner often need lengthy periods of expensive medical treatment, and they may want to meet with an attorney to see how best to seek appropriate compensation from the at-fault motorist.

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