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For Immediate Release
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Contact: Rae Tyson
Telephone: (202) 366-9550

Consumer Advisory: Federal Government Restates Rollover Warning for 15-Passenger Vans Users

As summer travel season approaches, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is again urging all 15-passenger van users to take appropriate precautions to guard against the possibility of a tragic rollover crash.

NHTSA research shows that 15-passenger vans have a much higher rollover risk than other passenger vehicles, especially when fully loaded with passengers and luggage.

If you are planning to take a trip in a 15-passenger van this summer, here are some safety tips to make sure the trip is a safe one:

• Make sure all passengers are buckled up at all times. NHTSA research shows that 80 percent of the occupants killed in van rollovers were not belted at the time of the crash.

• Make sure the driver has training and experience. Driver inexperience has been a major contributing factor in van crashes.

• Pay special attention to tires prior to a trip. Examine tires for signs of wear and aging, and always check to see if they are properly inflated to the pressure recommended by the manufacturer. Improperly inflated tires are another common contribution to rollover crashes, especially if the van is fully loaded with passengers and luggage.

“For a safe trip this summer, there is no better combination than safety belts, an experienced driver, and a well-maintained vehicle,” said Ronald Medford, NHTSA’s Acting Deputy Administrator.

Overall statistics show the number of deaths in 15-passenger van rollover crashes has been declining steadily since 2001. To view the latest report on 15-passenger van safety, click here.

For more information about 15-passenger van safety visit

U.S. Department of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590
1-800-424-9153 (TTY)