Last decade, over 47,700 pedestrians were killed and more than 688,000 were injured — more than enough to represent a genuine public safety concern. But could any of these fatalities or serious injuries have been prevented by designing safer cars? That's precisely what automaker Volvo is betting with its new V40, the first car ever to include pedestrian airbags.
The design is a result of strict new European standards for improving pedestrian safety. When the car is involved in a collision with a pedestrian, the hood raises up slightly and a U-shaped airbag emerges around the windshield to help cushion the blow.
The V40's pedestrian airbags aren't the only safety feature designed to reduce these type of fatalities. The car includes a suite of pedestrian safety features, including an automatic breaking system designed to reduce low-speed impacts while the driver is distracted — a major cause of accidents.
[Image source: Volvo]
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