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By now, even if you reside in a state without seat belt regulations, you’re aware that buckling up can save your life. But buckling your seat belt is not the only way you can proactively act to keep you and your family safe in your automobile.

1. Properly arm your airbags: If your vehicle contains air bags, ensure they are accurately armed. If they have been triggered, you’ll need to get them armed professionally.

2. Utilize your seat belt properly: There is a purpose for seat belts stretching over our chests and not only our laps. These chest straps prevent us from hitting the dashboard, the seat in front of us, or getting a dangerous case of whiplash. Make sure to buckle your seat belt as it was designed so you can get the maximum level of protection.

3. Plan appropriate and timely vehicle repairs: Transmission problems can cause your vehicle to act up in the middle of the street; improperly filled tires can compromise your brake system—there’s no limit to the prospective accidents that car maintenance problems can cause. Bring your vehicle to the mechanic on a regular basis so he or she can check for these problems before they help cause an accident.

4. Exercise airbag safety: Airbags have saved a lot of lives, but they can also be harmful in some situations. Kids under age twelve should never sit in the front seat with driver’s side airbags. If they need to, they should be properly buckled up with the seat far away from the dashboard, since airbags can actually injure anyone who is 2-3 inches from the point of inflation. Because the driver’s airbag is in the steering wheel, he or she can be injured, too. Measure your usual seating position when you drive and ensure that you are located at least 10 inches away from the center of the steering wheel.

5. Use rear facing car seats: Airbags are not the sole in-car threat to a child’s safety. Infants less than one year old or who weigh under 20 lbs. should always be buckled into rear-facing child’s seats in the back seat of the vehicle. Children under 4’ 9” should also use booster seats when riding in the car. This protects against seat belt injuries in case of an accident.

6. Adjust all mirrors: It’s simple to get into your car after another driver has ridden in it and forget to reposition your mirrors. This can lead to blind spots that let you back into an obstacle or change lanes without seeing a neighboring driver. Always be sure that your mirrors are appropriately adjusted and that you look for your mirror’s blind spots before navigating through traffic.

Exercising these easy car safety precautions will give you peace of mind and might one day even save a life.

For more information about Longview car insurance, give Shipman Insurance Agency a call at 903-297-4456.
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