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Are Passengers Safe in the Last Row?

With more and more SUVs, vans and passengers cars that are designed with third-row seats, many consumers are very concerned over the safety implications of seating children and adults in close proximity to the vehicle's rear. They are passengers safe in the last rowbelieve that by being in this position within the vehicle, they're  more vulnerable during a rear collision.

At Tony's Body Shop, we know that cars today are safer than ever and we see serious crashes all the time in Oxnard, CA where the inhabitants walk away unharmed. But, with vehicles containing third-row seats, are passengers at risk?

Reliable accident data concerning third-row accidents is limited, partially because third rows are often unoccupied. In addition, without evidence of an ongoing dilemma, carmakers are not mandated to conduct rear-crash tests using dummies.

Even though third-row passengers are closer to the impact point in rear-end collisions, they are far away from it in front end collisions, which are more frequent and typically more harmful. The largest danger to third-row passengers in a rear-ender is when the passenger is an adult and sits in a seat without a three-point seat belt. A properly installed child seat provides more protection than a third-row seat in many cases.

Another reason for a lack of crash data concerning third-row seats is due to the fact that most third-row seats are found in larger, heavier vehicles that commonly provide superior crash protection. The rate of serious, accident-related injuries for kids in minivans is only one-half of that of those in standard passenger cars, with SUVs at a close second.

Car designers are creating a fleet of smaller vehicles that feature a third row, including smaller SUVs, such as the Mitsubishi Outlander or the well-reviewed Nissan Rogue, or hatchbacks like the Mazda5. With these vehicles, the third-row seats are logically much closer to the rear of the vehicle, which means there's not much crush space available in the event of a serious rear-end impact.

When you're ready to purchase a vehicle with three rows, look for one that contains side-curtain airbags that reach all the way back to that third row. And remember that children who are too big for child seats need to wear lap-and-shoulder belts and head restraints that reach to the top of their ears. Check the owner's manual for occupant weight limits or other restrictions for any vehicle before you buy it.

We strive to bring you relative content from Tony's Body Shop in Oxnard , CA .

Sources: Wikipedia, NHTSA and AAA

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