Stephanie Tombrello: Hello, I am Stephanie Tombrello Executive director of SafetyBeltSafe U.
A. We are talking now about the importance of protecting your family in the car, and how to do it the best way. Now, we are going to discuss the benefits and the dangers of airbags. Passenger airbags in the front seat of the vehicle are there to help an adult buckled up in a safety belt to ride down a crash. Airbags have to come out very fast, and if a person is in the wrong location in relation to the airbag the contact will not be a pleasant one. An unrestrained person is often thrown forward at the same time the airbag is coming out, and they come together with tremendous force. Now it's really a risk for rear-facing child, never face a rear-facing seat in the front seat of the vehicle with an active airbag. If you must use the front seat, you must have either a removal of the airbag or a switch to turn it off. Side airbags and side air curtains have been introduced into vehicle sold in United States. Side airbags appear to be a very beneficial feature of new vehicles, not only because they oppose some barrier between an intruding vehicle or tree, but also because sometimes children or adults who are loose in the vehicle are stopped from being ejected from the vehicle. So side airbags and particularly side air curtains seem to be a very useful component for safety for children and adults. The statistics show that one is safer in the rear seat especially now that the rear seats have shoulder-lap belts, side air curtains, and many other features that make them more friendly for children. We know that statistically one loses about 40 % of ones protection just by moving to the front seat. Now, we have reviewed briefly the benefits and dangers of airbags and the benefits of riding in the rear seat. Next, we're going to talk about how to select the best seat for your child.