How Serious Does a Collision Have to Be for Airbags to Deploy?

Airbags serve to protect drivers and passengers in the event of a car accident. Airbags can protect individuals from serious harm or even death. Historically, airbags have reduced fatalities in frontal crashes by 29 percent.

However, airbags do not deploy in all collisions. It is important to understand what kind of accidents you can expect airbag protection in and what you can do to best ensure your safety in any type of collision.

How Do Airbags Deploy?

Airbags are considered to be a “supplemental” safety feature. This is because they work in conjunction with other vehicle safety features to provide the utmost protection. For example, airbags are most effective when paired with seatbelts.

When a vehicle is involved in a collision, crash sensors are triggered. These triggers send signals to airbags to deploy, if necessary. While a vehicle has several airbags, not all of them may deploy, as it depends on the type of accident and location of impact.

Airbags are primarily intended to deploy in moderate to severe crashes. However, in some cases, they may deploy in certain minor accidents if the specific location of the impact triggers a sensor.

Airbags are also made to deploy when there is an impact in the front or near the front of the vehicle. This is why airbags don’t always deploy in rear-end collisions.

Airbags are intended to significantly help avoid injury in an accident. While they cannot prevent injury altogether, they may prevent more extensive harm.

How Are Airbags Designed to Protect Individuals in a Car Accident?

On impact, airbags are designed to inflate within 30 milliseconds. Once inflated, the airbag helps cushion the blow of the crash. 

Airbags are located in the steering wheel to protect drivers’ heads from colliding with the wheel or front dashboard. 

Additional airbags are located on the sides of the vehicles. When inflated, these airbags resemble curtains. They prevent drivers’ and passengers’ heads and bodies from slamming into the doors or windows of the vehicle.

Getting the Best Protection from Airbags

Airbags are meant to be used in conjunction with other safety features. Without these additional safety features, airbags may not only not protect you properly, but they may even cause injury. 

To get the most protection from your airbags, make sure that you:

Use Seat Belts

Airbags work best when a driver or passenger is also strapped in with their seat belt. In the event of a collision, when an individual is not wearing a seat belt and the airbags deploy, it could do more harm than good, as the person will likely slam into the airbags.

Seat belts are intended to hold a person back, keeping them in place and preventing them from shifting around during an accident. 

Maintain Distance

Many drivers find it comfortable to drive very close to the steering wheel, but this could be dangerous if the airbags were to deploy. 

It is best to always maintain at least 10 inches of space between the steering wheel and your body. That way, in the event of an accident, there is enough room for the airbags to deploy safely and protect you effectively. 

Replace Airbags if Needed

Airbags can only be used once. Therefore, if your vehicle has been in an accident and the airbags were deployed, make sure to get the airbags replaced by a knowledgeable technician as soon as possible.

Do Airbags Ever Fail?

It is important to remember airbags are not meant to deploy in every single type of accident. Therefore, if airbags don’t deploy in a collision, it may just mean they were not meant to deploy, rather than that there was an issue with the airbags.

It is, however, possible for airbags to fail. For example, crash and airbags sensors can malfunction, resulting in airbags not deploying properly.

If you are in a collision that would normally trigger airbag deployment and they fail to function, it is best to seek legal advice.

Contact Our Car Accident Law Firm For Help Today

For more information, please contact Bradley Law Personal Injury Lawyers at your nearest location to schedule a free case evaluation today.

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1430 Washington Ave Suite #226 St. Louis, MO 63103
(314) 400-0000

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1509 NE Parvin Rd, Suite A., Kansas City, MO 64116
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