Airbags are essential, lifesaving devices that have prevented tens of thousands of deaths. More airbags, one might assume, would provide even greater protection. That isn’t always the case, a recent Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) study shows. One increasingly common type of airbag — the knee airbag — has a negligible effect on injury risk and, in fact, may even increase it in some cases, researchers found.
Knee airbags usually deploy from the lower dashboard and are intended to distribute impact forces to reduce leg injuries. They may also help reduce forces on an occupant’s chest and abdomen by controlling