Since 1999, federal law has required all new vehicles sold in the U.S. to have frontal airbags. This makes sense, as airbags saved more than 50,000 lives during a recent 30-year period. While your car’s airbags may help you survive a crash, you may also suffer a serious air-bag related injury.
Frontal airbags deploy in moderate and severe collisions. To protect you, airbags must inflate with great force in under a second. Here are three common airbag deployment injuries you may suffer in a motor vehicle accident.
1. Eye injuries
The soft tissues in your eye are vulnerable to damage during any impact. If your head hits the deployed airbag, you may sustain a corneal abrasion, retinal tear or other serious injuries. Likewise, the chemicals inside the deployment canister may irritate your eyes. In extreme cases, airbags may cause blindness.
2. Spine injuries
Car accidents often cause the head to move forward and backward rapidly. When your head collides with an inflated airbag, you may fracture bones in your spine. Depending on the severity of your vertebral damage, you may be vulnerable to paralysis. Regrettably, those who suffer catastrophic spinal cord injuries may lose their ability to perform everyday tasks.
3. Wrist injuries
You use your wrists for virtually everything you do. Because your hands and wrists are in the deployment danger zone, you may injure your wrists during a crash. Sprains, breaks and soft tissue injuries are not exactly rare in car accidents where airbags deploy.
Even though your car’s airbag may keep you alive during a crash, you may have to live with airbag-associated injuries for the rest of your life. Ultimately, to help you manage your post-crash condition, you may need to pursue financial compensation from the driver who caused the accident.