For all we know, car airbags are one of the most effective protective measures which help reduce the impact of an accident on the passengers. As a matter of fact, it has been reported that fatalities were reduced by up to a whopping 52 percent in the case of both belted drivers with frontal airbags as well as SUVs equipped with side airbags.
Functioning of Airbags
In every automobile, facilitated with airbags, there is a sensor with the ability to detect a collision. In the event of a collision, the sensor sends an electric signal to the airbag storage. The signal reaches an igniter compound which gets heated up to result in the decomposition of sodium azide present in the compartment. In addition, the heat leads to the filling up of the airbag with nitrogen. All of this happens in an incredibly small duration of 0.03 seconds, and within 0.05 seconds of the collision, the inflated airbag forms a buffer between the occupants of the car and the steering column/dashboard.
Advantages of Airbags
While it has been pointed out at the decline in fatality rate due to the presence of airbags, let us delve deeper to understand some other advantages that they entail:
• Airbags prove to be highly effective in protecting the passengers from any significant head, neck or spine injury by offering these parts with sufficient cushioning.
• Airbags limit the distance that the head of the passenger hurls forward, thereby reducing the risk of injury to the head.
• Airbags act as a protective wall between the passenger and the windshield and windows of the car, thus protecting the passengers from getting ejected from the car.
Limitations of Airbags
• Albeit in very few cases, airbag deployment has resulted in the ignition of petrol/diesel fumes. This happens as a result of the explosion of the igniter element. This may lead to injuries and severe burns.
• The deployment of airbags is known to reach incredibly high speeds of up to 200 mph, and can, therefore, result in severe fractures or internal injuries as a result. This is especially the case when the driver’s body is too close to the steering column.
• For the airbags to be truly effective, it is essential that vehicles have both, front as well as side airbags.
Tips Pertaining Airbags
• You must always invest in a car that offers both, front as well as side airbags.
• You should always use your seat belt, as airbags prove to be more effective when deployed on a belted passenger.
• In case your car’s airbags have been deployed as a result of collision, you must ensure that you get them re-installed only at an authorised auto car care centre.
We hope that you now have a fair knowledge regarding the role of airbags in a car. Do make sure you put this knowledge to good use. Until next time, keep safe!