In 2004, an estimated 2,647
lives were saved by air bags. From 1987 to 2004, a total
of 16,905 lives were saved. The NHTSA estimates that the
combination of an air bag in addition to a lap and shoulder
belt reduces the risk of serious head injury by 81 percent,
compared with 60 percent reduction for belts alone.
Nearly every new
car and truck is equipped with air bags.
Front impact collisions account for
the majority of all passenger vehicle occupant deaths. Buy
law, since 1998 all new passenger cars have been required
to have driver and passenger air bags in the U.S. Front
air bags are designed to reduce head and chest injuries.
Front air bags are designed to work with seatbelts and will
not restrain an occupant in side or rollover accidents.