Driving With A Broken Windshield? 4 Life-Threatening Consequences You Should Consider
It's easy to overlook a crack or a chip in your windshield, but if you don't quickly resolve the issue, you could put you and your family at risk. Your car's windshield performs a vital safety role, and even minor glass damage could lead to a serious problem. If you're driving around with a damaged windshield, consider the following disastrous situations that could occur at any time.
Your car's seat belts perform a vital role if your car suffers a collision, but the windshield provides a valuable second line of defense against ejection during a collision. Indeed, as technology advances, newer types of windshields can actively cut the risk of injury in a serious accident. For example, with some types of special glazing, the likelihood that you will penetrate the windshield during a frontal collision decreases by 78 percent.
Whether you suffer total or partial ejection, various injuries can occur. Broken bones, concussion, neck injuries, brain trauma and severe bleeding can all occur as a result of a vehicle ejection. What's more, experts believe that ejections cause 10,000 deaths per year.
Passenger airbag issues
Many people fail to realize that a car's windshield plays a vital role when the passenger airbag deploys. In the split-second when the airbag on the passenger side deploys, the safety device briefly presses against the windshield, helping to position the bag exactly where it needs to go against the torso.
However, a broken windshield may not carry out this job correctly. If the windshield has a crack or a chip, the deploying airbag may simply cause the glass to fail completely. The airbag is then less likely to protect the passenger, leading to serious injuries that could affect the eye, neck, head or brain. A replacement windshield could easily avoid these issues.
Rollover injuries and deaths
Your car's windshield provides 60 percent of the cabin's structural integrity. If your car rolls over during a serious collision, this extra strength could become the difference between life and death.
Car rollovers kill a lot of American people. In 2014, 12,507 car occupants died in vehicle crashes. While frontal collisions killed the most people (53 percent), 11 percent of these victims died for other reasons, which mostly included rollovers. Up to 958 people died when their pickup rolled over, while up to 1,102 people died when their SUV suffered the same fate.
Rollovers can occur for a number of reasons. Commonly, cars roll over when side force shifts the car's center of gravity. Nonetheless, in most cases, the vehicle trips on something like a curb or a pothole in the road. A broken windshield is less likely to support the roof structure during this type of impact, which, in turn, can lead to fatal consequences for anyone in the car.
Injuries during front-end collision
The windshield doesn't just support the roof's structural integrity. Much of the strength of the front end of the car exists as a direct result of the windshield. In fact, during a front-end collision, the windshield provides up to 45 percent of the cabin's structural integrity.
This structural integrity can protect you from some of the risks of front-end collisions. When a car collides with your car head on, the driver and front passenger are at serious risk of injury from the engine and other parts that the collision can force back into the car's cabin, especially at high speeds. If the cabin's structural integrity remains high, the car's design is more likely to protect the occupants from these injuries.
A broken or cracked windshield is not just a nuisance. This type of damage can put you and the car's other occupants at risk. Don't delay. Replace a damaged windshield today.
For more information and details, talk with an auto glass repair company, such as Becky's Glass Works.