Safety Group Finds The Back Seat Is No Longer The Safest Place In A Car

April 26, 2019

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For decades the seat considered the least safe in a car has been the front passenger position.  Known as the "death seat," car makers have spent years making this seat safer and it's been at the expense of the back seat.  The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) claims that back seat safety has long existed at a disadvantage compared to occupants in the front row. The group says that front-seat occupants relish in a variety of safety systems, from seatbelt tensioners that grip the occupant in a crash to a number of airbags on all sides that help soften the blow of a collision. Those in the rear seat do have seatbelts and side airbags, but there are no front-facing airbags back there, nor does every automaker equip its second-row belts with force limiters and tensioners. A new report finds the most common type of serious injury to back seat passengers was to the chest, which force limiters could help mitigate. A number of the cases pointed out that those in the back row suffered more severe injuries than people riding up front. They are recommending that automakers find a way to add front airbags to the rear seats as currently no manufacturer offers such protection. However previous studies have stated that children are 43% safer when sitting in center of the rear seat than off to one side. Your child is 5 times safer in a rear-facing car seat than facing forward.

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