What happens if your car’s airbags deploy in an accident or fender bender? Generally, the impact required to make an airbag deploy will also damage your vehicle. However, depending on the extent of the damage, your trusted mechanic may be able to advise you as to whether or not it’s safe to drive your vehicle again.
The first step is to assess your and your passengers’ health. If you’re feeling any pain or discomfort, it’s a good idea to seek medical attention immediately. It’s important to remember that the adrenaline from a crash can mask some injuries, such as whiplash or concussions.
Airbags are not just the bags themselves, but an entire system that consists of sensors, a control module and the bag itself. These sensors are located in areas of your car that are commonly compromised during an accident, such as the steering wheel, dashboard, seats and door frames. The sensors communicate with each other and the airbag control module to determine what caused the crash and when it is necessary to deploy the airbag. Once the trigger is pulled, chemical propellants ignite and inflate the airbag in less than 30 seconds.
If your engine is still running after the airbags have deployed, there could be a problem with the fuel cut-off switch which is designed to shut off the fuel pump in a severe crash to prevent fires. It is likely that the switch has been activated, and it’s a good idea to locate it and reset it in order to start your car.