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Thursday, June 02, 2005

nhtsa killing people with airbags

Airbags associated with increased probability of death in accidents, study finds

This article at PhysOrg.com defies the NHTSA party line that airbags save lives, and it isn't just talking about the well known dangers of airbags to children. University of Georgia statistics professor Mary C. Meyer, who recently published the results of her studies in the magazine Chance, explains the main problem with the NHTSA studies:
By way of analogy, Meyer explained it this way: “If you look at people who have some types of cancer, you will see that those who get radiation treatment have a better chance of surviving than those who don’t. However, radiation is inherently dangerous and could actually cause cancer. If you give everyone radiation treatments, whether they have cancer or not, you will probably find an increased risk of death in the general population.

“Making everyone have airbags and then verifying the effectiveness using only fatal crashes in FARS is like making everyone get radiation and then estimating the lives saved by looking only at people who have cancer. Overall, there will be more deaths if everyone is given radiation, but in the cancer subset, radiation will be effective.”

Read the whole article.

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