In our last blog we talked about seat belt safety and how important they really are. Airbags are another huge car feature that saves many many lives. It is important to note that they are meant to be used alongside a seatbelt, not on their own.
According to NHTSA, “from 1987 to 2017, frontal air bags saved 50,457 lives. And in fact, front airbags have been required in every vehicle since 1999.
Here are a few facts from IIHS on how airbags save lives:
- Front airbags reduce driver fatalities in frontal crashes by 29 percent and fatalities of front-seat passengers age 13 and older by 32 percent
- Side airbags that protect the head reduce a car driver’s risk of death in driver-side crashes by 37 percent and an SUV driver’s risk by 52 percent
The moment there is a crash sensors in you car measure the force of the crash and if it is severe enough to engage the airbags. If so, there are signals to fill your airbags with gas in a fraction of a second.
The intense energy that is used when an airbag deploys can sometimes cause injury especially when the driver or passenger is sitting too close to the airbag once it deploys. IIHS developed a list of tips you should follow in order to prevent these injuries:
Preventing airbag injuries
- Drivers and front-seat passengers should sit in the center of the seat upright against the setback with feet on the floor
- Arms and legs should never be resting against an airbag
- Avoid aftermarket dash or seat covers
- Drivers should sit with their chests at least 10 inches away from the center of the steering wheel
- Young children should sit in the rear seat
- Children shouldn’t lean against the door area
- For women in the late stages of pregnancy, a combination of properly positioned safety belts and airbags offers the best protection
Lastly, pay attention to vehicle recalls! Faulty airbags can also injure drivers and passengers. Takata airbags were the largest recall in our country’s history. 70 million vehicles were recalled from 2015 to 2019.
You can find information on recalls at NHTSA.
Airbags and seat belts save lives, use them correctly!
Contact: Glisson Law