Car Safety

Features that increase the safety of a car

Newton's Second Law of Motion

Force = Mass x Acceleration

Newton's Second Law of Motion states that the force acting on an object is equal to the mass of that object times it's acceleration. This means that if a car crashes, the impact will be affected by the acceleration and mass of the car.

How do mass/velocity effect the momentum and level of injury?

Momentum= Mass x velocity

This means that the faster it moves and the heavier it is, the more momentum it has. If the car has more momentum, injuries are going to be worse.

Crumple Zones

The crumple zone is an area at the front of the car which is designed to crumple and deform in a collision.

Braking Distance

The braking distance is the distance the car travels from when the brakes are first applied to where the car stops. Braking Distance can be affected by weather and speed. If the terrain is wet or icy, the braking distance will increase. Braking distance will also increase if the car is driving at a fast speed.

Escape Lanes

Escape Lanes are lanes which are designed to provide safety for cars which are having braking difficulties. Escape lanes usually have loose stones, or an equivalent, to provide extra resistance for said cars to slow down.

Crash Barriers

Crash barriers are strong barriers that are intended to reduce the risk of serious injuries during an accident.

Seat Belts

Seat belts are belts used to secure people into their seats during a journey in a vehicle. Seat belts have a level of 'give' which enables a person to move under control during an accident. One is twice as likely to die in a crash when not wearing a seat belt. Seat Belts have to be replaced after an accident because they lose the 'give' during that accident and would not work again.

Air Bags

Air bags are a safety device which inflates quickly to protect the passengers and driver of a vehicle in case of an accident.

ABS Brakes

ABS- Anti-Lock Braking System

ABS brakes prevent the wheels from locking in an accident which means that uncontrolled skidding can be avoided. ABS brakes allow the wheels of a vehicle to maintain contact with the road surface when braking.

The differences between safety features

The following safety features protect occupants during a crash:

  1. Air Bags
  2. Seat Belts
  3. Crash Barriers
  4. Crumple Zones

Whereas, these are designed to prevent accidents:

  1. ABS Brakes
  2. Escape Lanes
  3. Knowledge of Braking Distance