Airbags have protected drivers for years, and now they can help prevent injuries to pedestrians – Land Rover demonstrate pedestrian airbags for Discovery Sport.

Here’s how pedestrian airbags work in Land Rover’s new Discovery Sport:

On the face of it, anything that reduces injuries has to be welcome.  But there’s always side effects.  Two here – humans have an appetiite for risk, and as activities become safer will simply indulge in more dangerous behaviour, an effect known as ‘risk compensation’.   So if you know that every car has pedestrian airbags, will you then take greater risks when crossing the road, safe in the knowledge you won’t be killed or injured?  And don’t forget, the pedestrian may walk away, but the car will require repair.

Then there’s the aftermarket. Good luck fitting a bullbar, winch, driving lights and the like to the front of cars like this and the expecting the pedestrian airbag to work.  Another small nail in the coffin of aftermarket modifications, which in their own way improve safety and capability.

Will modifications like this be possible in the future?

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  1. Having, to my enduring horror, witnessed three (3!) older women being struck by young men with their cars (one only of whom was just inexperienced, and was suckered into a clear late that the experienced around him were carefully avoiding – the other two were mentally deficit or damaged, to have been driving at their speeds at the time), only the most perfect head-on dead-central collision would result in a struck pedestrian falling neatly against the ‘pillow’.

    The reality is that the sufferer sees danger at the last moment, and tries to avoid the impact, throwing themselves to one side, but still being hit by the front of the car to one side of centre, rolls back over the bonnet, then still rolling from the force of impact, even a low-speed one, falls off the bonnet head first, head down, onto the head.

    The internal and the external injuries are usually not apparent.

    In every disaster that I witnessed, the victims died one week after the accident, in appalling pain.

    They were all your mother’s ages.

    1. That’s why we need improved safety. Unfortunately, such tech will see the end of bullbars and the like, which in their own way are useful and have safety effects. Overall however, tech like this is the way to go.

      It does however raise the point I made which is that the safer things are, the more risk compensation humans indulge in

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