5 Safety Areas to Research When Buying a New Family Vehicle

Regardless of the type of driver you are when you’re single, you tend to become more safety conscious after starting a family. Does that sound like you?

Well, before you purchase that new family vehicle it’s good to know a few of the specific safety features you might want your car to have. We’ve narrowed the list down to five key things to look for in a new family vehicle.

1. Airbags

Let’s not overlook the obvious: airbags. We take them for granted so, we may not give them much attention when we’re shopping for a new family car. But we should.

Frontal airbags became mandatory in 1999. According to the National Institute for Highway Safety, frontal airbags had saved over 50,000 lives by 2017.

Airbag technology can mean the difference between a minor car accident and a major medical emergency. In addition to frontal airbags, side airbags have proven to be especially beneficial.

Today’s vehicles utilize multiple airbags, typically, about six. But, depending on a vehicle’s size, it may have 10 or more.

2. Rear-View Camera

There’s nothing more frightening to a driver than suspecting a child may be in the vicinity of the car but not knowing where. You can eliminate that nightmare scenario by purchasing a car that uses cameras to alert you to danger.

Of course, a rear-view camera is useful in many other situations as well. It lessens the likelihood of parking lot fender benders and dented garage doors.

3. Automatic Emergency Braking

Sometimes your reflexes just aren’t quick enough to avoid a collision. That’s when it’s good to have an automatic emergency braking system.

Even the best drivers can become distracted. Unfortunately, a second or two of daydreaming is all it takes in rush-hour traffic to cause an accident. Having automatic emergency braking is like having a co-pilot who’s always ready to step in before it’s too late.

But don’t confuse an automatic emergency braking system with a traditional anti-lock braking system. The emergency braking system activates without you stepping on the brake. On the other hand, the anti-lock braking system only goes into action once you depress the brake pedal.

4. Blind Spot Detection

Have you ever been shocked by the sudden appearance of a vehicle in the lane next to you? The car was probably there all along but hidden in your blind spot. It’s sobering to think what might have occurred had you unknowingly changed lanes.

Blind spots are a common occurrence in all vehicles. That’s why blind spot detection is a welcome relief. The system will emit a warning if there’s a vehicle just out of your sight.

5. Lane Departure Warning

Staying in your lane isn’t always easy. Parents can easily find themselves taking their eyes off the road to attend to one of their children.

If your vehicle has a lane departure warning system, you’ll receive an alert any time you threaten to drift. But distracted driving isn’t the only challenge to staying in your lane. Drowsy driving is also a danger.

And then there’s highway hypnosis. That’s the situation where a monotonous landscape causes you to mentally zone out.

As a driver, have you ever awoken from a trance-like state to realize you didn’t remember the last few miles? That’s a symptom of highway hypnosis.

When that happens, you’re bound to drift. So, that’s just one more situation where you’d appreciate having a lane departure warning.