Published on September 1, 2015
Airbags save thousands of lives every year, but that doesn’t mean that they’re the perfect solution for all car accidents. Not observing the proper precautions can mean suffering an injury from an airbag, or even being killed by the airbag when it’s deployed. Here are a few precautions that you can take to ensure that your airbag does its job as intended.
Always Wear a Seatbelt
Airbags are designed to work together with your seatbelt to absorb your momentum. The lap belt holds you down to your seat, and the airbag absorbs the impact of the crash as your body is thrown forward.
If you’re not wearing a seatbelt, your hips won’t be locked to your seat and will move forward along with the rest of your body. This means the airbag won’t hit you at the distance or at the angle that it’s intended to which can cause neck injuries, including whiplash.
Keep Your Distance
Airbags should deploy at a distance of at least 10 inches. Since the time between impact and injury is just a few microseconds, the airbag needs to inflate extremely fast. If you’re too close to the airbag when it deploys, you’ll be struck by it as it’s still moving at over 200 miles per hour.
Since it’s an airbag and not a real solid object it won’t necessarily kill you, but it’ll hurt and it can cause injuries to adults as well as children.
Don’t Let Children Sit in the Front Seat
Small children sit significantly lower than adults and child seats will almost always place the child within 10 inches of the passenger airbag. The concussive force of deployment, the airbag itself, and the angle of impact can all injure or kill a child in this position. Because of this danger, Florida law requires all children under 13 to sit in the back seat.
Service Airbags Regularly
If you get into a minor accident and the airbag doesn’t deploy, or if the system is just getting old and defective, the airbag light will turn on. Since that doesn’t really interfere with our ability to drive a car, we often just ignore the light and move on. That can be a big mistake.
If your airbag light turns on, it could signal a problem anywhere in the airbag system, which includes your seatbelts. It could also mean that your airbag won’t deploy, or that it’ll deploy in an unsafe manner when it does. Because of this it’s important to take it seriously and to get your car down to your mechanic to get it checked out.
If you’ve suffered back or neck pain after a car accident then you might be owed compensation for your medical bills and punitive damages. Call us at 1-800-INJURED and let us put you in touch with experienced local lawyers who can help you.
Category: Car Accidents