Every year some six million car accidents occur on American roads, injuring around three million people annually. Do what you can to ensure your loved ones don’t become statistics by choosing a car with the following key safety features.
Lap-Sash Seatbelts Keep the Whole Family Safe
Image Via Flickr by Tim Samoff
New cars have been legally required to have seatbelts by for more than four decades, so you’re not likely to encounter a vehicle without them. However, the type of seatbelts your vehicle has matters.
Many family cars have just a lap belt for the person sitting in the center back seat. While these belts will stop the passenger from being thrown from a serious accident, they don’t provide adequate protection for the head, neck, backbone, or internal organs. Look for cars with lap-sash or shoulder seat belts for all passengers, and ensure everyone wears theirs at all times. With seat belts reducing the risk of crash injuries by around 50 per cent, their importance can’t be overstated.
Anti-Lock Brakes Stop the Skids
You needn’t worry about your wheels locking up with anti-lock brakes, or ABS for short. As ABS prevents skids, they’re perfect for driving safely in treacherous wet or icy conditions. These clever brakes come as standard on most modern vehicles, but you can also have them installed in used cars.
Electronic Stability Control Keeps You Upright
Electronic Stability Control, or ESC, is relatively new technology but it’s a clever addition to any family car. This system uses sensors and microcomputers to monitor your steering. If the system feels your vehicle will travel in a different direction than you intend, it applies brake pressure to the wheels you need to help you stay in control. It can even reduce engine power to keep your car upright. Studies suggest that ESC reduces the risk of deadly single-vehicle crashes by 49 per cent, and the risk of fatal multi-vehicle crashes by 20 per cent.
Airbags All Round
Airbags are now standard for the driver’s seat of all new cars, as they protect the motorist’s head and neck from hitting the steering wheel or dashboard. But don’t forget about your beloved passengers. The safest cars have airbags for all the passengers in your family car. Look for vehicles with front and side air bags for both passengers in the front, and side airbags designed specifically for travelers in the back seats. These airbags, often known as rear airbags, will help protect your loved ones in the case of a side impact or rollover.
Child Locks Keep Little Ones Safe
Child safety locks prevent mischievous little ones opening doors, so they can’t fall out into the traffic or take off when you reach your destination. You typically activate the system using a small switch on the side of a back door, which is inaccessible once this door is closed.
If you have an especially stubborn escape artist, you may also like to employ window locks. These make sure rear windows can only open three-quarters of the way, enough for ventilation but not enough for a getaway.
You can breathe easier knowing that you’ll find the features to keep your family safe in the cars from the Buick GMC dealer Albuquerque, NM pitrebuickgmc.com.
Lauren Katulka is a happily married freelance writer living on Australia’s Central Coast. When she’s not playing around with words she loves spending time in the kitchen, watching indie films and cuddling her Devon Rex cat, Gizmo.