automobile air bag system

Study of 20,000 Crash Victims Shows Air Bag/Belt Combo Vital

A study of car or truck crash victims 16 and over from 1994 to 2002 in Wisconsin sheds new light on the trauma experienced by victims who were protected by seat belts alone, belts and air bags together, or air bags alone. The study of more than 20,000 crashes, published in the February 2009 issue of Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine, the journal of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, found only 14 percent of the drivers and front seat occupants involved in those crashes were protected by the combination of air bags and seat belts, although that number rose from 1994 to 2002.

Authors Marjorie C. Wang, M.D., MPH; Frank Pintar, Ph.D.; Narayan Yoganandan, Ph.D.; and Dennis J. Maiman, M.D., Ph.D., of the Department of Neurosurgery, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, studied a group of 20,276 drivers and front seat passengers; air bag/seat belt data were available for them, and they were not ejected from the vehicle in the crash. The data showed:

  • Using a seat belt and air bag together was associated with a lower risk of a spine fracture, including more severe fractures.
  • 38 percent of these crash victims were not wearing seat belts.
  • There were 2,530 spine fractures (12.5 percent) identified among the 20,276 hospital admissions: 1,067 cervical fractures, 565 thoracic fractures, and 1,034 lumbosacral fractures. Eighty-two patients (8 percent) with a cervical fracture also had a thoracic and/or a lumbosacral fracture. Fifty-four patients with a thoracic fracture, (10 percent) also had a lumbosacral fracture. Eight percent of these were classified as severe.
  • Using an air bag alone was associated with an increased risk of a severe thoracic spine fracture.

"I commend Dr. Wang and her group for performing this extensive, labor-intensive epidemiological study of motor vehicle crash victims. This research offers an invaluable assessment of air bags and seat belts -- two safety measures that, when used together, show evidence of decreasing the risk of these traumatic and often devastating injuries," said Dr. Charles H. Tator, M.D., Ph.D., of the Division of Neurosurgery at Toronto Western Hospital and the University of Toronto. He wrote an accompanying editorial in the same issue.

To read the journal article, "The continued burden of spine fractures after motor vehicle crashes," visit this site.

Product Showcase

  • The MGC Simple Plus

    The MGC Simple Plus

    The MGC Simple Plus is a simple-to-use, portable multi-gas detector that runs continuously for three years without needing to be recharged or routinely calibrated after its initial charge and calibration during manufacturing. The detector reliably tests a worksite’s atmosphere for hydrogen sulfide, carbon monoxide, oxygen and combustible gases (LEL). Additionally, it is durable enough to withstand the harshest treatment and environments, which is why it has an IP 68 rating. The MGC Simple Plus is also compatible with a variety of accessories, such as Gas Clip Technologies’ new GCT External Pump. Visit gascliptech.com for more information. 3

  • Magellan X Pte Ltd

    Hesitate No More with SOL-X Connected Worker Health & Safety Solution

    According to the National Safety Council, work-related medically consulted injuries total 4.26 million in 2021 in USA alone. SOL-X solution prevents “human factors” safety issues by anticipating incidents and improving compliance workflows. Leverages digital technologies (IIoT, AI and analytics) to predict patterns from occurring and make informed decisions. Control Of Work - gets rid of tedious paperwork and experience digital workflows. Crew Protect - maximises safety and situational awareness with health trackers and situational indicators. Award-winning Intrinsically Safe SmartWatch – innovative features that enable near real-time visibility and connected well-being. Works well with major connectivity protocols like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Long-Range Bluetooth! 3

Featured