As both developed and developing countries become more motorized, daily tasks such as transportation, commute and travel have become easier and more convenient. However, motorization also resulted in an increase of tragic injuries and deaths due to car accidents involving passengers and pedestrians. They are commonly caused by distractions, intoxication, speeding, poor weather, or design defects. Annually, roughly 1.3 million people die in car crashes, with an average of 3,287 deaths per day. Amongst the estimated 3,287 deaths, 1000 of them are under 25 years old. Additionally, 20 to 50 million people involved in collisions are injured or disabled.
Consequently, multiple vehicle safety devices and systems such as airbags, seat belts and head restraints have been invented as solutions to reduce the number of casualties and injuries in a car accident.This essay will study airbags, their mechanism, operation, socioeconomic implications, and connection to physicist Isaac Newton’s laws of motion.About AirbagsThe Supplementary Restraint System (SRS), more commonly known as the airbag, is a type of vehicle safety device used in automobiles to cushion and protect a passenger involved in a collision. They are viable safety features that are intended to be used in conjunction with seat belts, another vehicle safety device.
“The goal of an airbag is to slow the passenger’s forward motion as evenly as possible in a fraction of a second.” (Woodford, 2017). Many types of airbags have been developed, such as the frontal, side and seat belt airbag.The airbag was first designed in 1952 by American engineer John W. Hedrick, who developed the idea after getting into a car crash with his family.
In the next few decades, the crash sensor was developed, and after numerous tests and modifications, many automakers began to adopt airbags into their vehicles.Today, airbags are extremely common and have saved countless lives.