You can never predict what’s going to happen on the roads. Even if you are a careful driver you could fall victim to someone else’s carelessness or negligence. It thus becomes very important for you to buy a vehicle that is as safe as possible to transport the people who are the most precious to you in this world, your family. Whatever type of a vehicle that you are considering buying, you need to make sure that you get the safest vehicle that you can. While safe driving begins with the person behind the steering wheel, there are some safety features that can always add to your peace of mind. These could be government-mandated or optional but are very important to the safety of your family. Some tips:

Crash Test Scores

Once you have more or less decided on the budget, you need to investigate which of the cars that fit the bill have scored the best in crash tests. The ratings are done by two organizations – the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). One organization’s rating is not a substitute for the other’s as both of them measure different aspects of safety of the occupants and the vehicle. Check out both the ratings and opt for a car that performs well in both the tests.

Safety Features That Should Be A Priority When Buying A Family Car

LATCH Anchors

Child safety seats are required to be used along with the safety system termed as Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH). While the government has mandated them long back, most car owners, including parents, are clueless about them or their usage. Essentially, LATCH has a number of metal-loop anchor points incorporated to hold the child safety seat in place firmly in the event of a collision. You need to know how to use the system and also make certain that the fastening is as tight as possible. You can get your installation inspected by experts in the police and fire departments. To find the nearest point use the locator service provided by the NHTSA.

Stability Control

Most people confuse stability control with traction control. Stability control is required in all new cars by law and helps the driver to keep control of a vehicle in case it slides or skids. Traction control, on the other hand, helps vehicles on slippery surfaces to accelerate. If you are buying an old car, make sure it is fitted with the stability control else drop the idea as you will end up compromising your family’s safety. If you are searching for a used leased car for the family on then make sure it has a stability control built in.

Reversing Camera

Even with the standard three-mirror set up that is found in all cars, it can be pretty difficult to reverse a vehicle especially when you are parking in tight spaces. With a reversing camera installed on the dashboard or mounted over the rear view mirror, you can see for yourself what exactly is behind your car.You can avoid bumping into the vehicle behind you or cyclists and pedestrians who have a habit of appearing out of nowhere when you are reversing.

Blind Spot Warning System

Even if the all the mirrors are adjusted well in your car, you will end up with some blind spots that can be the cause of accidents. The blind spot warning system helps to avoid precisely that when you switch on the indicators to signal a change of lane. However, remember that the system works only when the lane change signal is given and can’t come to your rescue otherwise.