Are Side Airbags Worth It?

Crash test dummy hitting car airbag

There’s a lot to consider when buying your next car. How many seats does it have? Should you get one with an infotainment system? What’s the safety rating? That last question is crucial because there’s one aspect of vehicle safety most car owners don’t consider: the importance of side airbags.

Why It Matters

Previously, we found that t-bone collisions (also called side-impact) are one of the most dangerous kinds of car crashes. Despite that t-bones account for 10% of all U.S. car crashes, they account for 20% of car crash fatalities. The reason is simple: the sides of the car have no crumple zone.

Cars are designed to absorb the force of impact from the front and rear; to fold like an accordion and reduce the force of impact imparted on passengers. But the sides of the car have no room to place a crumple zone, so engineers need to get creative to address this problem. The side airbag is the result.

The Benefit of Side Airbags

T-bone crashes are often fatal for two reasons: The force of impact and shattered glass. In a side-impact crash where the struck vehicle is smaller, passengers are much more likely to suffer fatal head or neck injuries.

Side airbags not only cushion drivers from the blow but also reduce the risk of being hit by shattered glass. As a result, these side airbags reduce the risk of driver death by nearly 40% in small vehicles and almost 60% in SUV-sized vehicles.

The message is clear: If you have the choice, it’s better to invest in a car equipped with side airbags in the driver’s seat and curtain airbags in the rear.

If you or someone you love suffered serious injuries in a car accident, we’re ready to be the experience on your side. If you’d like to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Dayton car accident attorney from The Attkisson Law Firm, please send us an email or call (937) 230-8330.

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