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Discussion Starter #1
My wife was in an accident over the weekend. Everyone is okay, just rattled. Someone ran a red turning light. Car held up pretty good. Think its a write off?

20181215_162334.jpg p pr 20181215_162329.jpg 20181215_163047.jpg
 

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Well, the charger located behind the passenger side bumper may be toast. Bumper facia is as well. Headlights, font hood, maybe a radiator. At least $6K is my uneducated guess for parts know what the dealer/insurance company come back with.
 

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Glad to hear everyone is ok.

Considering the age of that Ranger, I'd say yes, the truck is a total loss....


Oh, The Volt?? woops... You'll be surprised with the total for repair. It may be close to being totaled..
 

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Glad to hear everyone is ok.

Considering the age of that F-150, I'd say yes, the truck is a total loss....


Oh, The Volt?? woops... You'll be surprised with the total for repair. It may be close to being totaled..
Looks like a Ford Ranger to me, and if that charger module is damaged the car will likely be totaled.
 

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The guy who ran the red light should have a device attached to his car. Like convicted dui drivers have to blow in a tube and pass in order to start the car, he would have to watch dash cam crashes before the car would start.

Definitely slows me down after watching them.
 

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Glad everyone's okay. Not fast enough to setoff the airbags, but the weight of the Volt still caved in the side of that pickup.
 

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Glad everyone's okay. Not fast enough to setoff the airbags, but the weight of the Volt still caved in the side of that pickup.
Yah, what's up with that? I thought air bags were a lot touchier than that.
 

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Waiting for progressive insurance to get back to me. I am also surprised the air bags didnt deploy given the front impact.
 

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The criterion for airbag deployment are a lot narrower than most people realize. But back on topic I suspect they are going to say the car is totaled, mostly because it is a Volt and the actuarial tables on that go up really fast.


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I am also surprised the front airbags did not trigger. It does require a certain amount of frontal crushing to do that, so you must have fallen just short of the necessary amount.

I also suspect it will be a total loss. It doesn't seem to take a very deep hit on a Volt to have high repair bills. It may be time to plan your next purchase.
 

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First, glad that everyone is OK.

Sorry to be late to the discussion, but....

I'm retired LEO and have attended more than my share of crashes (after the fact), and I've heard this a lot over the years since the first SRS airbags were installed. People seem disappointed their airgags didn't deploy, but it's understandable. It's a very expensive option that adds to the cost and complexity of vehicles, and is supposed to act a part in a crash. They are expensive, but like insurance: Only good when you need it, and a waste of money when you don't.

I'd like to dispel some misinformation, and maybe set some folks at ease about this very complicated, but very effective safety system. Please don't take this personal....

Not fast enough to setoff the airbags
Yah, what's up with that? I thought air bags were a lot touchier than that.
I am also surprised the air bags didnt deploy given the front impact.
The criterion for airbag deployment are a lot narrower than most people realize.
I am also surprised the front airbags did not trigger. It does require a certain amount of frontal crushing to do that, so you must have fallen just short of the necessary amount.
It isn't about speed. Simply put, it's the rate of deceleration (distance vs. time), vehicle orientation(s), and direction(s) of inertia (which are often multiple) that engages the system and determines its actions. These can be identical at 20 or 100 MPH. The only difference being the mass's motion interaction with stationary objects, such as pavement and landscape, and changes to the variables during an initial collision, and subsequent collisions (whether hitting, or being hit). A vehicle is not a stationary object. The SRS system is designed to protect occupants. Not vehicles, in any way. The system's purpose is intended to address only one of Newton's laws: the rate of deceleration, as it applies to the occupants. Increasing the time it takes to decelerate reduces the incident of injury to people. We've all heard, "it isn't the fall that kills you, it's the sudden stop". Funny, but it is the truth. A vehicle's braking system does the same thing: a transfer of energy over distance, vs. dumping it all at once. If your brakes caused instant stops, all airbags would be deploying soon after a vehicle leaves the dealer's lot, and a lot more people would be dead or seriously injured. Even a bug on a windshield imparts a level of deceleration upon a vehicle and its occupants. It doesn't end so well for the bug, but that energy went somewhere. It didn't disappear just because you didn't feel it.

If you walk away from a crash and are able to complain that your airbags didn't deploy, you were lucky, and they very likely should not have deployed. An airbag deployment is an extremely violent event, and it's only purpose is to allow an occupant to decelerate slower when impacting vehicle components, such as the steering wheel and dash. If you didn't suffer serious injury (or death) due to an impact (your body vs. a steering wheel, for example), an interaction wasn't necessary. Adding the violent impact of an airbag upon a person adds to the likelihood of greater injury, absent every other incident of impact. I'm sure we've all heard the anecdotes, not unlike the complaint of seatbelts or motorcycle helmets (a discussion for another time), that an airbag deployment "killed" an occupant. I can tell you, that if someone is killed in a collision, and the airbag deployed, the airbag didn't increase the likelihood of injury. Without the airbag deployment, the likelihood is the person would have had greater impact injuries w/o the airbag (more dead, as it were). The programming that controls deployment must weigh the likelihoods of injuries. Of course, there are exceptions. The SRS system is designed by people, and intended to be effective (deploy or not) in every conceivable conglomeration of variables. It's as perfect as any human-designed system can be, or ever has been, prior to any variables of a collision being known. If all crashes were the same, the solution would simple, and no one would ever get hurt. The point being, the use of airbags reduces the depth of injury and likelihood of death in almost every case, including when they don't deploy when they shouldn't. If you're still in the camp that thinks airbags are more dangerous than helpful, please describe for us the details of your next crash, before the crash. Then do the same for the rest of us. That would be more helpful than any safety system.

Anyway, in regards to the OP's crash...
First, the impact of both vehicles. The MOST fortified area of a vehicle (Volt) impacted the LEAST fortified area of a vehicle (Ranger), in regards to occupant protection against injury. This creates the greatest possibility of lesser injury to the Volt occupants, but creates the least possibility of lesser injury to the Ranger occupants, specifically any occupant closest to the points of impact. It appears to me the Volt did it's job to protect the occupants, as did the Ranger, with regard to the specific conditions of that crash. The damage to each vehicle is the energy absorbed by the vehicles and NOT transferred to the occupants. Vehicle damage is energy not spent on people damage. Physical damage helps an investigator determine the course of events of a crash. Monetary damage is of no interest to an investigator outside of statutory limitations. That's for the bean counters and insurance companies. Good luck with that! And remember, if the other driver is determined to be at fault, it is their duty to restore what their actions have cost you. Within legal limits, of course, it is their duty to restore what they took from you, up to and including, repairing or replacing your car, or provide fair compensation. It is not limited to what their insurance wants to cover. It's a civil matter, and their method of replacing your losses should be of no concern to you. If their offer doesn't appeal to you, find another similar car at fair market value, and insist the insurance company purchase it for you (they're called adjusters, but they don't really "adjust" anything but dollar values), or sue the driver for the difference. You may be surprised how often this works. Most people just take the best cash settlement they can, and go away with a loss. Money can purchase transportation, but sitting a Benjamin will take you nowhere.
 

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^ Thanks for sharing your experience and detailed information about airbag deployment. I would have to disagree with one of your points, though. The statement that "the airbag didn't [ever] increase the likelihood of injury." I am sure that is true the vast majority of the time, but if a passenger is out of position, it is possible for the airbag to cause injury or death. This is an issue to be aware of for short stature drivers too close to the steering wheel, babies in rear facing child seats, and any other passenger who is out of position such as an un-belted child who is standing up in the vehicle, someone leaning against the side of a car while sleeping, or a passenger putting their feet up on the dashboard, for instance. There have been rare examples of people being injured or killed in several of these scenarios. They can also be hazardous for people doing auto repair work near them. They are one of the best car safety advancements ever made, but they do deserve respect.
 

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^ Thanks for sharing your experience and detailed information about airbag deployment. I would have to disagree with one of your points, though. The statement that "the airbag didn't [ever] increase the likelihood of injury." I am sure that is true the vast majority of the time, but if a passenger is out of position, it is possible for the airbag to cause injury or death. This is an issue to be aware of for short stature drivers too close to the steering wheel, babies in rear facing child seats, and any other passenger who is out of position such as an un-belted child who is standing up in the vehicle, someone leaning against the side of a car while sleeping, or a passenger putting their feet up on the dashboard, for instance. There have been rare examples of people being injured or killed in several of these scenarios. They can also be hazardous for people doing auto repair work near them. They are one of the best car safety advancements ever made, but they do deserve respect.
I don't disagree with this, except (yeah, I'm always that guy)...

The engineers can't predict, and don't anticipate, the minority (less common) behavior of individuals. The vast majority of your examples of exceptions are repeatedly advised against, and in many cases, unlawful. Most of it is specifically described on the visor, and the owners manual (many, if not most folks read neither). There are exceptions to everything imaginable. Despite all the warnings, babies, children and adults are unnecessarily injured by airbags, by improper usage and product failures. Wearing a seatbelt while reclined is also ill-advised because it defeats much of the design (described in the owner's manual of every vehicle sold in The US, but people still do it). Infants are injured and killed by airbags, despite the warnings. I can say with confidence that, if not for the emotional punishment, these cases would very likely be successfully prosecuted. A death caused by the willful negligence of another is, at least, manslaughter. It is no accident that a parent places an infant, in a rear-facing car seat, within inches of an airbag, and the warning label, and the worst possible thing happens. I've seen it. It's nauseating. Every time. Even then, when we do everything exactly right, bad things still happen. There's no guarantee of fairness in life.

There will always be exceptions. There will always be anecdotes refuting commonly accepted fact. If the engineers get it right one more time than they get it wrong, what price do we put on that? At what point do we balance the benefit with the inconvenience? I don't know the answer to that, but I do know that when the benefit well exceeds the inconvenience for a vast majority of people, it's worthy of serious attention. Where the balance occurred is irrelevant, at this point.
 

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Thanks for all the informative input.

While of course the airbag responds to deceleration, most people think in terms of speed, which is just decel over time, so in casual conversation invariably people say speed, when they actually mean accel/decel. Further, I think we all remember when airbags first came out, or at least I do, we were told they would trigger at 5mph, the rate of walking, a speed metric. Of course, that led to some unnecessary deaths, or so the NHTSA determined, and the standard was raised so that the airbags would trigger at a higher speed and higher rate of decel, to prevent unnecessary deaths, as airbags are a violent explosion in and of itself.
 

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Thanks for all the informative input.

While of course the airbag responds to deceleration, most people think in terms of speed, which is just decel over time, so in casual conversation invariably people say speed, when they actually mean accel/decel. Further, I think we all remember when airbags first came out, or at least I do, we were told they would trigger at 5mph, the rate of walking, a speed metric. Of course, that led to some unnecessary deaths, or so the NHTSA determined, and the standard was raised so that the airbags would trigger at a higher speed and higher rate of decel, to prevent unnecessary deaths, as airbags are a violent explosion in and of itself.
True, the first introductions of airbags did cause some airbag-caused injuries and fatalities. This isn't what we're discussing, and it isn't relevant in regards to modern SRS systems. A lot of things in the automotive world that occurred in the 1950-1970's were less than well developed, with some that should have been classed as criminal. Some of the most popular collector vehicles, for example, were built on one of the worst chassis in history (X frame). Times are different. We are far from perfect, but a lot less far than 40-50 years ago, at least in this regard. We're smarter than we've ever been in history (despite what we see in the media), but we've barely scratched the surface of what is to be known. No matter how smart we get, we will never know what we don't know.

For comparison, 3 MPH is an average walking speed, 4 MPH a brisk walk, and 5 MPH would be more like a power-walk, for an average, healthy adult. Maybe a little faster if you ate your Wheaties, but not much.

The "5 MPH deployment" is often misunderstood. While 5 MPH may be too slow to really offer a significant benefit, and the airbag deployment could be more violent than the initial impact in many cases (an early conclusion, too late), any speed reference is related to a differential of velocity, and a velocity as it impacts the occupants of a vehicle. A more modern metric of 8 MPH and greater, but not really much more (still seems pretty slow), is the current point of origin, in regards to "impact speed" (collisions impacts are typically analyzed in reverse, from the end to the beginning, as part of a study). The point of origin would be the moment of study, as it applies to the factual impact upon a human body, or more specifically, the organs of a human body. If a vehicle is traveling at 50 MPH and impacts a concrete abutment (a stationary object), it would be a 50 MPH impact, but the actual energy imparted upon different parts of the vehicle, vehicle parts upon vehicle parts, and finally the occupant, while the same energy (mass in motion), becomes dispersed over time as the rate of deceleration increases for each vehicle part and/or occupant. Compare the same collision of 2 like vehicles, head-on at 25 MPH each, and the result is similar. Add to the study, the same vehicles at the same speed, but at approach angles other than linear zero, and infinite outcomes develop. Any energy in motion requires an (exact) equal and opposite reaction, one way or another, before the energy is completely exhausted. A 5 MPH impact with concrete may be perceived as violent, while the same 5 MPH impact with packing peanuts of infinite depth would be perceived as very little impact (or an impact with nothing but atmospheric air at sea level, as an extreme), although the dispersion of energy (totality) in each case remains exactly the same, whether perceived by humans or electronic sensors. A single collision may include either, both, or any variation in between or beyond, once, or including subsequent multiple collisions. The difference is the moment from initial impact to the moment of complete secession of motion, in relation to the time elapsed for each affected object. It's deeper than that, as a rate of deceleration may not be linear or constant (it rarely is), and the sensor and computing device/method has no idea where the occupants began, will end, or how they get from one point to another, but I think that's too much variation for this argument. Simply, a velocity may begin as an analog reading on a dial, but an infinite number of variables enter the picture before the event is done. In a fraction of a second, or several seconds. At this time in history, we can only guess (educated and otherwise) what will occur during a collision of infinite unknown conditions that hasn't yet occurred, then instruct a non-sentient control device (often built by the lowest bidder) to do everything we guessed, at the exact moment it should. Piece of cake.
 

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My 2012 Volt was involved in a crash where the other person pulled out in front of me. My volt was totaled and it did not look as bad as yours does. Glad to hear that everyone is okay. Good luck.
I ended up buying another 2012 Volt.
 

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The insurance company will declare it a total loss. If it were an 2017 or 2018 maybe not. Total loss compares repair estimate and what they will spend in keeping you riding in a rental while it's fixed plus having to make sure you are satisfied with what they can write a check for and be done with it. They will write you a check for retail on a 2013 Volt equipped like yours with similar miles.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Yes my vehicle was declared a total loss. They did end up sending me a quote for 9000 to do the repairs. My total loss payment was just under 14,000.
 

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I was in a similar wreck (probably at lower speeds) almost five years ago, shortly after I purchased my 2014 Volt with only 1k miles. Repairs took four weeks and cost almost $11k. It's still my daily driver and is the longest I've kept a car.
https://gm-volt.com/forum/showthread.php?103585-Wrecked-after-only-2-weeks

I also thought that truck was an F-150 from the angle, had to take a second look to realize it is a Ranger. I bet the owner will continue driving it as-is, lol. I miss the Rangers I had...

In 2005, my '99 Maxima SE was totaled because airbag replacement cost was $5k. The only injuries I sustained in that wreck was friction burns on my arm from the airbag. Come to think of it, I believe that was three months after I bought that car. I had searched online for the specific year, trim, color and options, found only a few for sale in the country, and this one was in the neighboring city.
 
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