Why You Should Always Secure Objects in Your Car
The roadway can be a harrowing, danger-ridden place, replete with all manner of potential obstacles and unpredictable individuals—however, while keeping a wary eye on their surroundings, many drivers neglect to notice the potential dangers lying within their own vehicle. Unsecured objects in auto accidents can cause significant injuries or fatalities via secondary collisions, as even light detritus, given enough force, can become a projectile capable of breaking bones and crushing flesh.
Objects That Need to Be Secured
To help reduce the dangers that a car crash poses, you should always firmly secure certain categories of objects in your car:
- Anything portable should be thought of as a potential projectile; phones, laptops, toolboxes, groceries, backpacks, cameras, books, food, and anything else that you’d normally carry alone can be sent flying during a collision; the harder and heavier it is, the more likely it’ll be to maim or kill.
- Loose debris, like empty water bottles, grocery bags, papers, trash, magazines, loose hats (even while worn!), and other such items can be dangerous in their own way, even if they don’t pose a direct risk of injury. If scattered by wind or movement, these items could cause dangerous bouts of distracted driving via direct obscuring of your vision or sudden efforts on your part to keep them in place.
- Animals, while not commonly thought of as “objects,” can become lethal projectiles if unsecured, hurting or killing both the animal and whoever they hit. If you do need to drive with a pet, secure them in a crate stored low to the ground or against the back of a seat, or use a certified restraint system (such as a reputable doggy seat belt).
- Passengers, similarly, are governed by Arizona’s seat belt laws and should buckle up to avoid secondary collisions with the inside of the vehicle or other occupants. While seat belts will suffice for adults, appropriately certified, selected, and installed child restraint devices of varying forms are necessary for smaller passengers, so make sure to do your due diligence.
General Tips for Storing Objects
Cleanliness is for more than just convenience; keeping the occupant-carrying regions of vehicle tidy and clutter-free is one of the best ways to stay safe, as you can’t have unsecured objects in the car if there are no loose objects present in the first place.
- Clean your car out regularly, to ensure that random litter and objects don’t pile up in disuse.
- Always store things in the trunk when possible; otherwise, keep them low to the floor, pressed flush to the backside of a frontal surface.
- If you have a truck bed, make sure to store everything with tethers and cargo nets as needed to avoid anything crashing through rear windshields.
- Make a particular effort to avoid leaving anything on passenger seats, as these are the most dangerous spots for unsecured objects to rest.
- If you do need to keep personal items on hand as the driver, use a glove box or the area at the foot of the front passenger seat.
Unsecured Objects in Arizona Auto Accidents
Unsecured objects present unique considerations in the context of auto accident claims, as fault tends to become shared matter; if you sustain a concussion because you left a laptop on your rear seat, that’d be your fault in part, yet simultaneously, that laptop wouldn’t have been sent flying if an at-fault driver hadn’t hit you. ELG’s auto accident attorneys in Arizona can help you sort out these complex considerations and maximize your settlement, so give us a call at (623) 877-3600 to schedule a free consultation today.