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Semi Underride Guards Failing - New Requirements Coming Soon?

Jason Reese

Over the last few years, you’ve probably noticed a significant increase in the amount of discussion regarding rear “guards” on semi-trucks. These rails, sometimes referred to as the “Mansfield bar,” at the bottom rear of the truck were originally designed to keep smaller cars from sliding under the end of the semis in the event of an accident.

Unfortunately, recent studies from the Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) have shown that the materials and durability of these underride guards are far too weak, and they often fail in crashes.

As a result, the IIHS has petitioned the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to increase the durability standards on these underride guards. So far, no response has been given by the NHTSA.

Even though legal standards have not been increased for these guards yet, many manufacturers have started production on pieces that are far more durable than even the suggested new specifications require, as IIHS crash tests have recently drawn more and more attention to the issues with these “safety” devices.

Safety Issues “Underride” Semi Accidents

The biggest issue with the current underride guards come when a smaller vehicle endures a collision with the semi at a back corner of the truck. It’s been proven, even with these guards in place, for a smaller car to get caught under the edge of the bar, often resulting in a much larger accident where the car can be dragged by the semi.

Even with every possible form of protection in place in a smaller vehicle (airbags, seat belts, etc), a collision with the rear of a semi often bypasses these safety measures, as it only hits the top of the vehicle. These types of crashes most often result in severe head and neck injuries for the vehicle’s occupants, and very often, death.

Call Wagner Reese – Semi Accident Attorneys

If you’ve been involved in a semi-truck accident, you know that the results are often life-altering, and hugely devastating. Here at Wagner Reese, our job is to help you restore your life to what it was before your accident, and we will work to do the best job of that we can.

If you or a loved one have been injured or killed by a semi, call our offices today for a FREE consultation and more information on how we can get you the compensation you deserve as a result of your accident.


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