Feds Warn; Ditch Rhinestones On The Steering Wheel
Though personalizing your car can be fun, the feds are warning you to ditch the rhinestones on the steering wheel. Government officials put out a consumer alert against a specific customization. It’s simple, decorating the steering wheel could lead to severe injuries in the event of a collision. More specifically, a little rhinestone-studded ring that can be placed over the manufacturer’s logo. All this came up this morning on The Mike & Carla Morning Show.
On Monday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a statement advising car owners not to attach hard stick-on decorations to the center of their vehicle’s steering wheel. The agency urged immediate removal of any existing decorations, emphasizing that these decals could transform into dangerous projectiles in a crash, posing a risk of serious or even fatal injury.
The Feds Are Warning You Do Avoid Bedazzling Your Steering Wheel
The NHTSA recounted an incident where a driver suffered a significant injury, losing sight in one eye. As a result of a crash that dislodged a rhinestone-adorned aftermarket emblem from the steering wheel, striking the driver’s face.
The agency described the potentially hazardous items as “metal or plastic plates, typically adorned with rhinestones or other shiny decorations…”
While the NHTSA did not specify particular products or manufacturers. However, it emphasized the general danger associated with such steering wheel decorations. Most modern passenger vehicles are equipped with driver-side airbags. These bags that deploy from the middle of the steering wheel during a significant impact. The forceful inflation of the airbag towards the driver’s head and face is designed to cushion the impact of a crash. Factory-added decorations are engineered to stay in place when the airbag deploys, but aftermarket embellishments pose a risk.
Recently, Nissan recalled certain vehicles due to concerns about the logos on their wheels coming loose. According to Kelley Blue Book, over 400,000 vehicles are subject to a recall due to the potential detachment of their steering-wheel-mounted emblems, posing a risk of becoming projectiles in the event of an accident.
For further details, refer to the complete consumer alert released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration here.