You may have heard that you need to keep your hands on the steering wheel in the 10 and 2, but new evidence has determined that a new hand position for the steering wheel actually allows you better control, is more ergonomic and can help you avoid an accident. By shifting your hands down the steering wheel to the 9 and 3 o’clock position, you can actually get better control of your vehicle and will be more comfortable when you drive. The following are a few in-depth examples why this hand position is optimal for avoiding crashes or even injury during a crash.
Some drivers keep both hands on the top or the bottom of the steering wheel. Some use only one hand to steer. While different people grip the steering wheel different ways, anything besides both hands on the wheel at 9 and 3 reduce the amount of control you have over your vehicle and can lead to collisions if you are ever in a situation where you have to react quickly to avoid a hazard. The 9 and 3 position allows for better control because it offers balance with the vehicle, your turning radius increases, and both hands let you maneuver with less difficulty.
In addition to control, the 9 and 3 o’clock position is optimal because it’s considered a parallel position, making it more comfortable. It keeps the driver’s body stable to reduce excessive steering wheel movement. This is an issue with many young drivers, who tend to overcorrect when faced with a situation in which they must quickly maneuver their vehicle. Excessive steering wheel movement tends to cause serious crashes and even fatalities.
The 9 and 3 o’clock position also allows drivers to change lanes safely because they can go 180 degrees either way and arrive back at the center. It’s also better for your arms and hands and reduces fatigue, making it the ideal hand position for a long drive.
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In the past, drivers were recommended to position their hands at 10 and 2 o’clock. This was before airbags were invented. If you were to keep your hands in that position now, you could break your hands or arms in the event of an airbag deployment. More serious—and rather repulsive—injuries include amputations and degloving.
Airbags tend to deploy upward, so your chest and head are protected. This force of deployment—up to 250 mph—can cause your hands, if placed at the top of the steering wheel, to hit you in the head. If your hands are not amputated, then you could still suffer a concussion or a broken nose. These injuries may sound extreme, but they happen. Remember, keeping your hands in the optimal 9 and 3 o’clock position prevents airbag injuries in the event they deploy in a collision.
There are many things you can do to avoid accidents, and putting your hands in the proper position on the steering wheel is a preventative measure you can take. The following list continues more tips on how to stay safe in Las Vegas. However, if you have been injured, don’t hesitate to reach out to us today for help.
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