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All parents should be aware of the risk of seatback collapses

On Behalf of | Dec 29, 2021 | Personal Injury

Because the young ones in your family are vulnerable to catastrophic injuries during a motor vehicle accident, you always strap them into a car or booster seat before you drive. While your child’s car seat offers good protection, it may not help much during a seatback collapse.

For more than two decades, safety professionals have warned carmakers about the weak seat supports they install in their vehicles. Sadly, most manufacturers have done little to minimize the risk to young passengers.

What is the risk?

The front seat in your vehicle stays upright thanks to an internal mechanical system. The force from a serious collision, though, may cause this system to break. If that happens, your front seat may collapse backward. If you have a child in a rear-facing car seat or a forward-facing booster seat in the back, the combined weight of your front seat and your body may crush him or her.

Why do seatback collapses continue to happen?

The federal government has not updated its safety requirements for front seat supports in half a century. This means many car manufacturers can save money by installing weaker front supports. While some high-end vehicles often come with stronger supports, many cars, trucks and SUVs on the road today pose some risk to young passengers.

How can you protect your kids?

If you are in the market for a new car, it may be beneficial to ask about the construction of its front seats. Otherwise, to help keep your kids safe, it is advisable to place them behind unoccupied seats whenever possible.  Nevertheless, if someone you love suffers a catastrophic injury or dies because of a front seat collapse, you may be eligible for substantial financial compensation.