Ford Safety: Inflateable Rear Seatbelt

Ford has introduced a breakthrough in automotive safety technology. Debuting on the 2011 Ford Explorer are the world’s first production inflatable rear outboard safety belts. In the event of a frontal or side crash, the inflated belt is designed to deploy in less than the blink of an eye. Its unique design helps distribute crash force energy across more of the occupant’s torso than a traditional belt, which helps reduce the risk of injury while providing support for the head and neck. After deployment, the belt remains inflated for several seconds before dispersing its air through the pores in the airbag. Inflatable safety belts are compatible with child safety seats. Because inflatable belts are not as large as traditional front airbags, they can fill at a lower pressure and at a slower rate. Ford research showed that more than 90 percent of people who tested the inflatable safety belts found them to be similar or more comfortable than a conventional belt because the belts feel padded and softer.

Posted by ford on Feb 20 2011 in Automobile Safety

Avoid Snow Storm Accidents

Looks like we might dodge a major storm this weekend as predictions indicate it will stay to our south and eventually blow out toFord F150 in Manchester sea without hitting us badly if at all. But this is still a good time to remember some of those winter driving tips that can keep you safe – especially during that first bad storm of the season when everyone seems to have forgotten their good ol’ New England driving abilities.

First, don’t go out if you don’t have to. Kids don’t have school? You don’t have work? Great, go make some snow men.

You may find, however, that you still have to leave the house. If you can, wait until the plows have been around and there’s some salt or sand on the road.

Clean off your vehicle completely. This means the roof too. Large clumps of melting snow may slide onto your windshield from the roof, obstructing your view. Or, if frozen, the wind may catch it and cause a hazard to cars driving behind you.

When you are actually on the road, keep your speed down – no matter what kind of vehicle you’re in.

Be aware of yourself and everyone around you. If that car in front of you with the bald tires starts to skid, do you have enough room to stop?

Don’t use cruise control or overdrive on icy roads.

Bridges freeze first be careful. Also, on shaded roads you may find frozen patches.
If you encounter a plow or sand truck, don’t pass it. They can’t see you. Since they are cleaning the road in front of you, why would you want to pass them?

If you find yourself in a rear-wheel skid take your foot off the accelerator and steer in the direction you want your front wheels to go. Pump standard brakes gently but if you have ABS, don’t pump, apply steady pressure.

Carry a bag of kitty litter in your trunk. If you get stuck you can poor some in front of your wheels to try to get some traction.

These are just a few tips to help you remember all you already know about winter driving.  With some forethought and common sense, we can all enjoy a safe winter.

Posted by ford on Dec 17 2010 in Automobile Safety

Fall Checkups, Make them happen before it gets too cold!

Fall is not only a beautiful time of year, but also the perfect time of year to get your vehicle maintenance and repair up to date. That last thing you want to happen is to be stuck with a broken down car in the middle of winter, and if you really think about it the cold weather is not that far away. It”s important to remember that vehicles need seasonal adjusting- if you don”t want to get caught out in the cold. To keep your car in top shape and running smoothly as we transition into cooler months, there are four big tips to keep in mind: tires, engine tune-up, oil, and cooling system. Tires Pressure and Wear:

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Tires lose pressure every month, and more when the temperatures drop. To maintain proper pressure, check your tires monthly and make sure they”re filled up to their recommended psi rating (which can be found on the driver”s side door paneling, in the owner”s manual or sometimes on the tires themselves). Drivers should also check the tread on the tires regularly for wear and replace excessively worn tires. If it has been over 5,000 miles since your tires have last been rotated, it is important pokies online to do so because there”s a risk of having one tire wear more significantly than the others. Systems and Fluid Levels: A basic yearly tune up is a good idea – preventing vehicle damage is much less expensive than repairing it. A tune-up will correct engine problems such as stalling and diminished power. At the least, make sure all fluids, such as windshield wiper fluid, brake fluid, and oil are at proper levels. Oil: Lower temperatures can add stress on your engine. To prevent engine wear, change your oil and oil filter as specified in your manual. A switch to synthetic oil will help your car operate more efficiently. Some synthetic motor oils are specifically designed to protect your engine in wide temperature ranges. Cooling System: The cooling system (radiator) should be checked for leaks and low levels. When checking, remember to never remove the radiator cap until the engine has thoroughly cooled. A vehicle”s coolant (or antifreeze) is equally important in the colder months to make sure the vehicle can withstand the temperatures.

Posted by ford on Oct 29 2010 in Automobile Safety

Parents of Teen Drivers at ease with new Technology

For many parents, the day their teen gets their drivers license is a day to be proud, but also a day to be worried. While better education, laws, and training are setting teen drivers off on the right foot, teen accidents continue to soar. When a teen drives out of sight, parents can only wait, wonder and worry until they return home. But thanks to technology, moms and dads can now electronically follow their teens with their teens by tracking their whereabouts in real-time, monitoring their behind-the-wheel behavior with a video camera, recording whether they’re driving too fast or in a forbidden area and even limiting how loud they can crank the stereo. A study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety released in May of 2009 shows that such electronic leashes make a significant difference in causing teens to drive safer. If you want a monitoring service that’s virtually kid-proof — and don’t want a teen to know they’re being tracked — there’s no shortage of spy gadgets available in a variety of price ranges. For real-time tracking, you’ll need a GPS-enabled device installed — and dole out money for a monthly service fee. You can also track teens through their cell phones. Thanks to GPS receivers built into most mobile phones, for an extra fee, carriers allow parents to keep tabs on their teens in real-time on the Internet via satellite mapping. Parents can not only use the services to pinpoint the location of their progeny at any time, but also set up a “safety zone” and send notifications when a kid leaves it. The downside is that if a kid turns off the phone or loses it, the system is useless. If you don’t want to track your teen but would like to set limits on their behavior behind the wheel, there’s tech for that, too. Ford’s MyKey comes standard on the 2010 Focus and will soon migrate to other Ford, Lincoln and Mercury models. It allows parents to program any of a car’s keys so that when it’s inserted into the ignition an embedded transponder chip imposes certain limits. Parents can set the car’s top speed at 80 mph and speed-alert chimes to sound at 45, 55 and 65 mph, as well as limit the overall volume of the audio system to 44 percent of maximum. They can also program MyKey to have the seatbelt reminder chime incessantly and the audio system to mute until the driver’s safety belt is buckled, as well as not allow safety features such as blind-spot monitoring and traction control to be turned off. While it will always be worrisome for

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parents to set their kids off into the world of driving, parents of today may feel a bit more at ease. With today’s technology, even when teen drivers are out of your sight doesn’t mean that you’re out of their minds. And that you don’t have to go out of yours worrying about them.

Posted by ford on Jul 30 2010 in Automobile Safety

Crash Test Dummies and How they Work

Immediately before a crash test, each dummy has his or her face, head, chin and knees smeared with greasepaint, so researchers can see which parts of the dummy are hit in the crash. Yellow-and-black adhesive targets are applied to either side of the dummy’s head to serve as reference points when the researchers review the crash test videos in slow-motion after the crash. Finally, sensors are placed all over the dummy’s body. During a typical crash (which lasts just a fraction of a second), the sensors will record as many as 37,200 items of data. Despite all this abuse, crash test dummies actually have a pretty long lifespan. They are used in dozens of crash tests; although, they sometimes need repairs after sustaining “injuries” in a crash.

For anyone who has shopped for a new or used car, safety ratings are without a doubt a factor in which car you buy. Cars have become safer and safer over the years, and crash test dummies can be partly thanked for this. Dummies of the past were simple tools, but today they are designed specifically for body types, are wired to give back data to the researchers, and play a huge role in the safety rating process.

Crash test dummies tell researchers what injuries humans are likely to experience in a similar real-world car crash. Today, safety testers call upon an entire “family” of dummies — with models designed as adults, children, babies, and even pregnant women.

Adult-sized crash test dummies were developed to measure the effect of injury on nearly any size adult in every type of collision. There are five child dummies used in various NHTSA and IIHS crash tests. Pint-sized dummies have been in use since 1973. Early child dummies were used for car seat research. In 1977, General Motors developed a 33-pound dummy representing a 3-year-old for airbag testing. Today, the company uses child dummies in the rear seats of its vehicles to study the effects on children in a crash. Researchers look at what happens when a child is “out of position,” or not sitting perfectly upright in the seat. Although child dummies don’t directly impact crash test ratings, they have driven home the point that today’s seatbelts are not ideal for a vehicle’s youngest occupants, which in turn has led to federal recommendations for placing older children in booster

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Posted by ford on Jun 24 2010 in Automobile Safety