The Hidden (and Not So Hidden) Ways Your Car is Designed to Protect You
Did you know that while over 36,000 people died in automobile crashes in 2018 over 50,000 died annually between 1966 and 1973. That’s over 14,000 lives saved per year on the nations highways, in spite of the fact that there are more vehicles than ever on our roadways.
Many of these lives are being saved by some hidden, and some not so hidden, safety features. Here are some of the ways your car is designed to protect you, whether you know it or not.
Your car may have more airbags than you realize. While driver-side airbags first appeared in Chrysler vehicles in 1988-1989, they became widespread in the early 90’s in other brands. Today, cars may have up to 10 airbag modules including side airbags, on car pillars, knee bolster airbags and even pedestrian airbags.
Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS)
Older drivers will remember being schooled to “pump” their brakes when sliding on a wet, snow covered or icy road. This was because when brakes locked on a slippery surface, they actually promoted skidding. Anti-lock brakes automatically pump the brakes helping to stop the slide. ABS in mass-produced cars began appearing in 1978.
While safety glass traces its history to 1929, it wasn’t until the National Highway Safety Transportation Administration (NHSTA) began setting modern standards in 1970 that it really became effective in keeping occupants from being ejected.
Electronic Stability Control
Cars produced starting in 2012 are required to have Electronic Stability Control, a feature that helps keeps cars from skidding. This is done through a series of sensors that detect sideway motion, wheel speed, and angle and adjusts accordingly automatically to stabilize a vehicle.
Crumple or Crush Zones
You may not be aware but your car is designed to crumple or crush in a certain way when involved in a crash. This reduces the likelihood of an accident transferring the impact of the crash to its passengers. This is why cars crumple similarly when crashing into a tree.
One of the more overlooked qualities of cars today is the quality of the tires they have. Blowouts, a significant cause of accidents in the fifties, sixties and even seventies are relatively rare today. Add the recent technology of automatic air pressure monitoring systems and rolling on the roadways is more secure than ever.
We take many of the safety features in our cars for granted, but they have helped keep auto insurance rates down. If you are comparing auto insurance rates we invite you to contact us for a no-obligation quote.