According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), air bags have saved thousands of lives every year since the federal government made them mandatory for all passenger cars in 1998.
However, despite their potential for saving lives, air bags can also be dangerous for children and adults that sit too close to the steering wheel or dashboard.
Here are 6 air bag safety tips to keep you and your loved ones safe in the event an air bag deploys:
1. Children under the age of 13 should ride in the backseat.
2. Never place infants in rear facing child safety seats in the front seat of a car with a passenger-side air bag.
3. If a child is over one year old and must ride in the front seat of a car with a passenger-side air bag, put the child in a front facing child safety seat and push the seat back as far as possible.
4. Everybody in the car should buckle up for every trip, no matter how short the drive.
5. The driver and front passenger should push their seats back as far as is practical, so there is at least 10 inches between their breastbone and steering wheel.
6. If your airbag deploys or is stolen, you will be required to replace it. You should be reimbursed for replacing an air bag under the comprehensive portion of your auto insurance policy.