We’ve all heard those country songs, the ones that tell you to throw your worries out the window, relax and put your feet up on the dash and enjoy the ride. If you’re a routine passenger, that’s likely a position you’ve sat in and enjoyed because it IS more comfortable. Unfortunately, that comfort is not worth the potential pain you could face if presented with an accident. Have you ever considered how unsafe that could be in a collision?

Riding around as a passenger in a vehicle is a common thing we’ve all done, and on long trips it’s normal to face mild discomfort and to try and find a comfortable position. This often includes putting your feet up on the dash, and while it’s comfortable for a moment, the consequences could be detrimental. If you’ve ever been the unpleasant victim of a deployed airbag, you know how painful that is. An airbag takes 1/20th of a second to deploy, and deploys between 100 and 220 mph depending on the make and model of your vehicle. Imagine being in a collision, the airbags deploying, and forcing your knees into your face, or the force of the airbags breaking the bones in your legs. The airbag is in your vehicle for safety reasons, but will only protect you when used properly. 

That horror story is what happened to Audra Tatum in August of 2015. She rode with her feet on the dash of her husband’s vehicle, and they were in an accident. Two years later, she’s still facing extreme difficulties. She’s now using her story to caution other people from the severe pain and trauma that she endured by trying to be comfortable on a car ride. No matter how quickly you think you can pull your feet down, the airbag will always be quicker.

While on long drives it may make sense to put your feet up for comfort, or to get in a quick nap before your shift of driving, you’re putting yourself at risk. Even though you haven’t been in an accident in years, or your girlfriend is a wonderful driver, do yourself and your family a favor and keep your feet planted with your seat belt on. 

If you are interested in reading Audra’s story, you can find it here: