Discusses how various safety devices in cars can help to save your life if and when they are used properly, talks about seatbelts, airbags, head restraints, and ABS

Essay by ChicaBonita2324 December 2003

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As time keeps passing by, more and more people are driving on our roads hence; it is predictable that there will be an increase in the number of accidents and fatalities. All motor vehicles today come equipped with a bare minimum of safety features that are designed to protect all the occupants of the vehicle, including the driver and the passengers, in the event of an accident. The safety features include seatbelts, airbags, anti-lock brakes, and head restraints.

The safety trends of today date back to the 1950's when new car features such as the wrap-around windshields (elimination of distracting center dividers), padded dashboards, and collapsible steering columns (shafts that collapse like a telescope in a collision) were produced. Not only have the insides of the cars gotten safer, but the outside aspects of the car have also improved. Steering systems, suspensions and brake engineering have all improved and contributed to better stability and control.

The addition of anti-lock braking (ABS) has added to the safety of cars. During most emergencies, people tend to mash down on the brakes and lock up their wheels. All that does is melt the tires and next thing they know, they're sliding on liquefied rubber. With ABS, when the car's wheels begin to lock up, a computer activates a system that pumps the brakes automatically, pulsating many times per second, and helps prevent skidding. The result is better braking and more steering control.

When seat belts were first introduced in 1950, they were viewed as a novelty more than a critical life-saving device. Today, not only are seatbelts mandatory standard equipment in new cars, but also state law also requires that we use them. Seatbelts are also universally recognized as one of the auto industry's most significant safety breakthroughs. A lap/shoulder...