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Feet on Dashboard?

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Feet on Dashboard?

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
September 25, 2007

Yesterday I stopped alongside a minivan, and all I could see of the passenger was her feet on the dashboard. I called across to the driver that her passenger was going to be in a world of hurt, if that airbag went off. What was the mom's response? "I don't like her, anyway." (I was pretty sure she was kidding and, besides, what kind of stranger yells such a warning to another vehicle?)

Have you ever been in a car when the airbag exploded? Have you ever seen a demonstration of airbags?

The Crystal Lake Fire Department popped three of them one afternoon during a demonstration of fire trucks and equipment. Thank goodness we were outside. The explosions were LOUD - somewhat like what it must be to be in a closet when a 12-gauge shotgun is fired.

But noise probably won't hurt you - permanently. The force of an airbag will hurt you, and permanently. If something had caused that airbag to explode under that girl's feet, her legs would have been forced up into the air and back toward her shoulders. The injury to her legs, hips and back probably would have crippled her.

Think about warning your children, grandchildren and friends of this danger. While it might be true that airbags seldom explode under normal driving conditions, why risk it?

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