Cars > Tech

Why hasn’t anyone thought of multi-collision airbags sooner?

Thankfully, South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Group already has

It’s important that airbags deploy at the point of impact—every impact. PHOTO FROM HYUNDAI MOTOR GROUP

The airbag has been saving countless lives since it was first deployed inside a production car. Over the years, it has evolved to help improve passenger safety in the event of a crash. Thankfully, automakers haven’t stopped working on the technology to continue perfecting it. The Hyundai Motor Group, for its part, has bared plans to develop a new and improved airbag system to help provide better passive safety to customers.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in the US found that around 30% of 56,000 car accidents recorded from 2000 to 2012 were of the multiple-collision variety. Of these multi-collision accidents, 31% had vehicles crossing over the center line of the road, 14% were caused by sudden stops at tollgates, 8% were median-strip incidents, and 4% had vehicles hitting trees or electric posts.

Some crash victims have complained about airbags failing to deploy. PHOTO FROM HYUNDAI MOTOR GROUP

Realizing the prevalence of multi-collision accidents based on the above data, the Hyundai Motor Group is now proposing to improve the performance of airbags during such road mishaps. You see, current airbags do not offer further protection when the initial impact isn’t forceful enough to  trigger their deployment. With the planned multi-collision airbag system, the Korean automotive company claims to be able to make airbags deploy more effectively when a second or succeeding impact occurs.

A new airbag system promises to better detect a subsequent impact. PHOTO FROM HYUNDAI MOTOR GROUP

The system works by detecting the position of the occupants inside the car when the initial collision happens. By knowing the position of the passengers and recalibrating the system’s sensitivity to collision intensity, these new-generation airbags can and will deploy more timely and more effectively should the system detect a second impact. With this new technology in place, injuries caused by multi-collision accidents will be better prevented or at least lessened, according to the press statement.

While the best way to avoid road casualties and injuries is still through careful and defensive driving, it’s nice to know that car manufacturers are continuously trying to find innovative ways to help us get to our destinations in one piece.

Red Santiago

A jack of all trades, Red is passionate about cars, motorcycles and audio. He sometimes drives for a ride-hailing app company—just because he really loves driving.