Most crash injuries happen when you collide with something inside your car, such as the steering wheel or door. Improving interior safety reduces the chance of serious injury.
There is a range of interior features you can check for when making your next vehicle purchase. While vehicle manufacturers are required to include some of these features to meet the minimum standards required of new cars, the provision of others is optional.
By law, new cars must meet minimum standards, which include:
A knee bolster is a crushable barrier under the dashboard that stops your knees from striking hard surfaces during a crash, reducing the likelihood of serious leg injuries.'Deployable' knee bolsters are basically airbags for the knees.
A restraint control module is the computer that controls the release and timing of your car's different protection features, such as safety belt technology and airbags. When it detects a crash, the RCM triggers these features in a certain order.The RCM can also record the vehicle speed and deceleration of the crash, the firing times of the restraints systems and whether belts were worn. It could also provide signals to trigger emergency intelligent transport systems to summon help.
Collapsible steering columns 'fold' under impact to prevent injuries to the driver in a crash. This is a key way of keeping the driver safe, even in cars fitted with airbags. Steering wheels, along with all other features inside a car, should be covered with energy-absorbing padding to minimise harm to the driver in a crash.