In order to protect drivers and passengers, automotive manufacturers began experimenting with the idea of creating a "cushion" in the event of an accident. In 1967, Dr. David S. Breed invented the ball-in tube inertial sensor for crash detection. Breed marketed the item to Chrysler and, over the years, it has become the modern day airbag. The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimate that airbags have preceded 25,782 deaths over the past 11 years.
Front airbags are typically kept in an automobile's steering wheel. In the event of collision, they should deploy immediately and then quickly deflate. The purpose of frontal airbags is to reduce the force of impact a driver comes into contact with the interior of their car. Without airbags, drivers would be forced to collide with the hard steering wheel, frequently causing broken ribs, head trauma, or death. Frontal airbags are not intended to provide protection in the event of a rollover or side collision.
Three generations of airbags exist. The safest was released in 2003 and became standardized in 2007. Older vehicles likely contain out-of-date technology; however, if you take your vehicle to its manufacturer, they can update your system.
Side impact airbags are intended to provide protection for drivers 'and passengers' head and chest in the event of a side-impact collision. There are three types of side-impact air bags: torso, head, and head / torso combination. While they are not required for new vehicles, they are a popular safety feature.
While airbags are designed to protect passengers and increase automotive safety, defective airbags can cause serious injury. If an airbag fails to deploy in the event of an accident, occupants may incur injuries from impacting hard surfaces in the interior of their car. Additionally, if an airbag deploys randomly and unprovoked, drivers may sustain injuries to their face and torso due to the high pressure of deployment. In order to minimize your risks of injury from airbags:
• Always wear your seatbelt, as airbags are not an adequate replacement
• Always seat children under 12 years of age in the back of a vehicle
• Leave at least 10 inches of room between the air bag cover (typically steering wheel) and your chest
While these steps will help minimize your risk of injury, there is no guarantee.
If you have been the victim of a defective airbag, your vehicle's manufacturer may be liable for any damages you incurred.