By now, even if you live in one of the 18 states without a primary seat belt law, you know that buckling up can save your life. But wearing seat belts is not the only way to keep you and your family safe in your car.
- Properly arm your airbags. If your car has air bags, make sure they are correctly armed. If they have activated, you’ll need to have them armed again.
- Wear your seat belt properly. There is a reason why seat belts stretch across our chests and not just our laps. These chest straps keep us from slamming into the dashboard, the seat in front of us, or getting a severe case of whiplash. Make sure to wear your seatbelt as it was intended so you can get the complete range of protection.
- Practice proper and regular vehicle maintenance. Transmission problems can cause your car to stop in the middle of the road; poorly filled tires can compromise your brake system—there’s no end to the possible accidents that inadequate car maintenance issues can cause. Take your car to the mechanic habitually so he can check for these issues before they cause an accident.
- Practice airbag safety. Airbags have saved many lives, but they can also be unsafe in particular circumstances. Children under twelve years of age should never sit in the front seat with driver’s side airbags. If they must, they should be properly buckled up with the seat as far away from the dashboard as possible, since airbags can actually harm anyone who is 2-3 inches from the point of inflation. Because the driver’s airbag is in the steering wheel, he can be injured, too. Measure your normal seating position when you drive and make sure that you are located at least 10 inches away from the center of the steering wheel.
- Use rear facing car seats. Airbags are not the only in-car threat to a child’s safety. Children less than one year old or who weigh less than 20 lbs. should always be buckled into rear-facing child’s seats in the back seat of the car. Children less than 4’9” should also use booster seats when riding in the car. This avoids seat belt injuries in case of an wreck.
- Adjust your mirrors. It’s easy to get into your car after another driver has used it and forget to tweak your mirrors. This can lead to blind spots that allow you to reverse into an obstacle or change lanes without seeing a nearby driver. Make sure that your mirrors are properly adjusted and that you check your mirror’s blind spots before making any moves in traffic.
Observing these simple car safety precautions will give you peace of mind and might even save a life one day. Call us today for a Norfolk Car Insurance quote at (757) 583-1828.