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Studies Show Dangers of Loose Objects in Automobiles

Recent studies have shown that many drivers are increasing the risk of injury or death in automobile accidents by leaving items unsecured. Safety expert, Sean Kane of Safety Research and Strategies, told Good Morning America that ordinary objects in cars and trucks are responsible for 13,000 injuries each year[1]. Those half-filled water bottles, canned goods, lab tops could all become dangerous projectiles when hurling through the air during collisions. At 55 miles per hour, a 20-pound object hits with 1,000 pounds of force -- so powerful that a suitcase can literally seer the arm of a crash test dummy[2]. Sadly, many drivers are completely oblivious to the dangers until it is too late, as was the case for Heather Storey. Heather was driving her car in 2009 when she was hit by a tow truck. Subsequently, Heather’s computer turned into a deadly projectile and flew into her head and neck causing horrific fatal injuries that she succumbed to[3].

A recent segment of Good Morning America offered several tips for protecting yourself and your passengers. First, drivers should only pack items in the truck or cargo area of their vehicle, where they are less likely to intrude into the passenger compartments. If your car has a cargo area, utilize the cargo nets, anchors, and tethers to secure the cargo. Perhaps most importantly, if it is not important to your drive, leave the object at home. This gives people a good reason to clean out their cars. Drivers can also utilize storage compartments better and pack large, heavier objects low to the ground, against fixed components and centered inside the vehicle[4]. By doing this, the objects will not build up momentum in the event of a crash.

There is no fool proof way to avoid a car accident, but drivers can take steps to minimize the potential for injury or loss of life. Cleaning out your vehicle and not leaving unnecessary heavy objects in your vehicle are two of those ways. By taking these steps, drivers can help reduce the chance of injury should they be unfortunate enough to be involved in a motor vehicle accident.

 


[1] //kansascity.injuryboard.com/automobile-accidents/did-you-know-lose-items-in-your-car-can-become-deadly-projectiles-in-a-crash.aspx?googleid=283050

[2] //kansascity.injuryboard.com/automobile-accidents/did-you-know-lose-items-in-your-car-can-become-deadly-projectiles-in-a-crash.aspx?googleid=283050

[3] //lansing.injuryboard.com/automobile-accidents/secure-loose-items-in-your-car-before-hitting-the-roads-it-could-mean-your-life.aspx?googleid=283076

[4] //kansascity.injuryboard.com/automobile-accidents/did-you-know-lose-items-in-your-car-can-become-deadly-projectiles-in-a-crash.aspx?googleid=283050