I don't know about airbags. I never worried about them for a long time, but a few things have raised concerns for me.
In today's cars, the airbags raise heck with mounting radios - it you aren't careful, part of that radio is going to become a projectile that is ramed through your forehead. That's bad enough.
But, both of my kids and my mother are all short people - very short people. My daughter and Mom worry me the most because they have to sit so close to the airbag in the steering wheel in order to reach the controls. Even the 'depowered' airbags are enough to cause serious injury to someone too close to it. I don't like the idea of my daughter getting her beautiful little head ripped off because a minor accident sets off the bags. I've lectured her many times on staying as far back from the steering wheel as she can get, but I still find her sitting too close at times. Another very short friend of mine hit a deer and did minor damage to her car, but the airbag put her in the hospital. I am airbag agnostic, all the way.
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Thats a tough one RGR, because its got to be a compromise between "good control" and being far enough away from the airbag. I'm short and I prefer to drive the way Aryton Senna and Fangio drove - pretty close to the wheel and pedals. Other people like to be further away like Jim Clark. Its whatever suits you.
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The only reason why I put in the disclaimer was to get around having a legal/political food-fight. Since we haven't, it's okay to talk about people who do not obey the seatbelt laws for reasons other than dislike of wearing seatbelts.
Originally Posted by N4ZAW
My question to you would be: should people be required by law to insure their cars? Let's say that the requirement to insure your car was unconstitutional, and therefore not required. Should an uninsured person risk driving knowing that if he or she were in a serious accident and survived, he or she would likely be sued for all damages (inculding possible fatality) in the other vehicle(s) in the accident? The person at-fault would be bankrupted, when that might not have been the case if the person took out insurance on the car.
There's libertarianism, and then there's good sense. Maybe drivers shouldn't be "forced" to do anything but buy a car outright or make regular payments on a loan. There are other aspects of driving which also require personal responsibility even if one is not forced to take these measures by law.
Jeez Louise!! Just watch the news. Who walks away and who was ejected and deadulated.
Its mandatory in the UK that when you drive, you wear your seat belt. If the cops stop you for not wearing the belt, you get fined £60 and your name appears on a list. When you next insure your car you will find the cost has increased by up to £150 and this will continue for three years. In some cases not wearing a belt can cost you £ 2000
Originally Posted by WA6MHZ
It is immaterial that the government demands seat belt use. The evidence is clear that wearing a seat belt greatly enhances ones survivabilitg in an accident. That is the reason one ought to wear a seatbelt.
In 1977 seatbelts became mandatory to use here in the Netherlands, saving lots of lives and reducing injuries.
I can't understand people not using them, running the risk oif much greater injury, and costs to them and the healthcare system we all pay into.
We had a set up here from the Dutch AA motoring service a seat mounted on a slope that propelled you to 19 miles per hour to a dead stop just 30 km's an hour easy to do in a city.
Doing that once made you a full believer in seatbelts.....that is just 19 miles per hour...
Since then i always use the seatbelts, as will do all passengers if they want to drive in my car, the airbags are nice too, but just as 2nd defenseline.
As does carefull driving do, i'm a quite defensive driver awarre of what happens around me using the mirrors and looking far ahead, something you learn driving articulated lorry's here as i did.
In 43 years of driving a lot i had one small accident i was to blame, 6 times i was run into from others...over several million KM's, all over Europe.
Licensed since 1977
I'll set aside the obvious lack of wisdom it takes not to wear a seatbelt while driving, because there is no debate there. However, I will bit on the "civil liberties" aspect, since this is a very common farcical argument against seatbelt requirements.
Sure, your civil liberties say that you should have every right to put yourself in danger. After all if you aren't infringing upon the rights of others, who cares what you do? Right? But, as a motor vehicle operator and member of a civilized society, chances are you have a job, and more often than not are carrying one or more insurance policies that would pay money to someone on your behalf. As a member of that insurance class, you have a moral if not legal duty not to act with reckless disregard for the financial health of the insurance pool, as the purpose of insurance is to spread risk assuming everyone in the pool acts with due diligence to avoid it. Insurance does not exist as a license for you to act with reckless abandon. It is therefore incumbent upon you to exercise restraint in your risk-taking to avoid willful and negligent behavior that places your entire insurance pool at financial risk.
The same argument applies any time you are reaching into someone else's wallet for your own benefit. You do not have the moral right to willfully and negligently take MORE money from them just because you know they will be there to bail you out if you act stupidly. (Think of health insurance). Normally the remedy for people who present high or unacceptable risk is to kick them out of the pool, but now that we have, for example, mandatory health coverage, this remedy is no longer possible, so now your reckless behavior becomes a criminal violation of someone else's civil rights, in theory.
Also, seatbelt laws are not a violation of your civil liberties, because you do not have a fundamental right to drive, and agreeing to obey all vehicle laws, including those that require you wear a seatbelt, is a condition you accept for the privilege of driving.
ABSOLUTELY the gobberment knows best. If they didn't dictate that cars have seat belts, more people would be dead. If they didn't dictate that cars have air bags a lot more people would be dead. Would the car manufactures just put in all that on their own and spend more money for our safety? Well, it's good that SOMEONE is thinking of what is more safe and going to save lives. Even if it is the Gobberment.
Originally Posted by WA6MHZ
Ok, sarcasm aside, I always think of it this way. Lets say that some people force you on a roof of a 7 story building and stick you in a cage that's big enough for you and a car seat. And there's a seat belt in there and a switch for some air bags. Now they say,
''We are going to push you off the roof now. You can buckle up and turn on the air bags or you don't have to.''
So before they push you off the roof, are you going to buckle up or aren't you? A fall from a 12 story building and crashing on the ground is the same thing as a crash at 60 mph.
here's something on you tube about that but the audio isn't very good
Last edited by W0UZR; 08-16-2013 at 12:06 PM.
I spent all my years when I was young wishing I was older. Now I spend all my years when I'm old wishing I was younger....
I didn't wear my belt this morning on the way into work. I DID wear it on the way home last night. Both trips I made it just fine.