Being involved in a serious Bucks County auto accident can leave you shaken, and even anxious about driving. More than likely, in a moderate to high-impact crash, at least one of your airbags will deploy, which is a frightening experience in itself. Doylestown area personal injury lawyer Michael L. Saile, Jr. adds that on top of really startling you, your airbag can also cause you to suffer certain injuries, depending on how much of the airbag comes in contact with your body.
The severity of car accident injuries, in part, to comes down to how your body is positioned at the time of impact and, of course, which part of your vehicle took the impact. With regard to airbag induced injuries, you could suffer a hurt wrist depending on how your hands were positioned on the steering wheel. AAA now recommends that drivers keep their hands on the steering wheel at “9 and 3” instead of “10 and 2” as was the rule when many of us learned how to drive. This “repositioning” of the hands may allow you to avert additional accident injuries should your airbag deploy. You could also experience facial cuts and brusing, or eye damage, if you are a driver who keeps the seat very close to the steering wheel. With these factors in mind, you may consider making some changes to your positioning when you drive.
Some things you should know about airbags:
- The airbag’s purpose is to cushion – or prevent – our bodies from hitting interior objects of the car, such as the steering wheel, window, dash board, or windshield.
- Cars are equipped with crash sensors, which send a signal to the control module of the airbag to let it know when/if to deploy.
- The NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) reports that the use of a seat belt combined with an airbag prevents serious head injury 81% of the time and serous chest injury 66% of the time.
- Airbags go off in 1/20th of a second and come at you at very high speed.
- In less serious accidents, fender benders as they are called, you airbag will probably not go off.
- Depending on where you are hit, airbags are designed to go off in rear-end, front-end, side, and roll-over collisions.
- Hitting another vehicle at a speed of about 28 mph will generally set off the airbags.
What types of injuries can airbags cause when they go off in the course of an accident?
- Abrasions and facial lacerations
- Eye injuries
- Broken nose
- Severe bruising
- Broken fingers
- Sprained, strained, or broken wrist
- Broken ribs
Even though in some cases an airbag can be responsible for some of your injuries, we are so much safer in our cars than we used to be before airbags were standard. Though, seat belts are still the number one safety device that will help save your life in an accident.
If you have been injured in a severe auto accident caused by another’s carelessness do not rely on an insurance company to “take care of you” as they may claim they will. Do not make any statements to the other driver’s insurance company or sign any forms/releases they may urge you to sign. Speak to a local car accident injury lawyer before agreeing to any settlement offer or request the other person’s insurance company makes. Navigating the aftermath of a PA or NJ car accident is not easy, so if you are injured contact a local accident lawyer to discuss your case. We offer you FREE information on auto accidents in our guide, How to Maximize Your Pennsylvania Car Accident Case Before an Insurance Company Takes Advantage of You. Download your copy now by clicking here.