One of the reasons that people choose SUVs is that they feel safe. They’re large, capable vehicles. They can handle the snow and ice of the winter months. They keep drivers higher up than much of the traffic around them, which makes these drivers feel safer.

Well, as it turns out, this feeling is not all in their heads. When you look at fatal crash rates, an SUV really is a safer vehicle than many other models and types. According to The Science Times, the deadly accident rate for SUVs clocks in at 34% less than the average for all vehicles on the road.

When you look at other vehicles, you find very telling statistics working against them. For instance, the deadly accident rate for subcompact cars comes in at about 4.5 incidents for every billion miles that these vehicles cover. For sports cars, it’s even higher, at 4.6. That’s the highest rate of any vehicle type.

This really sheds some light on the role of the size of your vehicle. Sports cars aren’t just more dangerous because they’re fast or designed for performance, though that can play a role. Like subcompact cars, they’re more dangerous because of their size. Even if sports cars and SUVs got into the same amount of accidents every year, the odds of people passing away in the SUVs would be significantly lower because these vehicles are designed to protect their occupants in ways that smaller vehicles simply cannot replicate.

Serious car accidents are all too common. Those who get injured or lose loved ones must know what legal options they have.