In the case of a collision, airbags are tasked to deploy in milliseconds in order to keep vehicle passengers safe. The airbag inflates in less than 1/20th of a second once they get a signal from the car that a crash has happened. According to the National Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) both side and frontal airbags saved approximately 50,457 lives between 1987 and 2017.
And while these safety mechanisms are undoubtedly here to protect us, sometimes these airbags can cause injuries. These injuries are especially severe for young passengers and pets. Injuries can include broken noses, ribs, lacerations to wrists, and some more serious injuries such as organ failure and internal bleeding.
Nonetheless, there are ways to avoid such injuries, minimizing the risk while keeping you and your loved ones safe in the case of an auto collision.
Avoiding Airbag Injuries
Wear Your Seatbelt
Make sure you and everyone in your vehicle wears their seatbelt. While airbags are safety measures to keep you safe in case of an accident, they are not a standalone feature. Airbags are a supplement to seatbelts, not a replacement. Wearing your seatbelt will reduce the risk of you jerking forward, hitting the dashboard, steering wheel, window, side door or even worse being ejected through the front window of the vehicle.
Scoot Your Seat As Far As Comfortable
Sitting as far back as it is possible will reduce the risk of injury to your face and chest areas. The NHTSA recommends a distance of 10-12 inches between the driver and the steering wheel, this will allow both the seatbelt to work and reduce the speed of impact with you and the airbag once it deploys.
Place Kids In the Back
All kids 12 years and younger should be seated in the backseat and in appropriate child seats according to their size. NEVER place infant seats in the front passenger seat as this can be fatal due to the injuries caused by the speed of airbag deployment. The NHTSA has produced a clear guideline for all car seats and booster seats to keep your children safe in the back of the vehicle.
Keep Your Hands In the 9 and 3 o’clock Positions
Try to maintain your hands in the 9 and 3 o’clock positions on the steering wheel while driving. This can reduce the risk of your wrist or arms flinging forcefully as the airbag deploys, causing painful injuries resulting in broken bones.
Auto Collision Repair With Ric’s Body & Paint
These tips can greatly reduce the risk of you and your loved ones being injured by airbags in case of a collision. We also know that accidents happen in milliseconds and things happen on the road that are out of your control. If you’ve suffered a collision, our expert technicians at Ric’s Body & Paint will work with you to restore your vehicle to its original condition. Contact us today to learn how we can help you!