Government overhauls air bag safety rules

Friday May 05 by Claudia bourneusatoday
Children and small adults will be better protected from inflating air bags, Transportation Secretary Rodney Slater says of an overhaul of the federal government's air bag standards. Under new rules announced Friday that will take effect with the 2004 model year, automakers would be required to perform tests using an entire ''family'' of auto dummies, including 1-, 3- and 6-year-old children and a small woman, as well as an average size man. The regulations attempt to recreate real-world conditions by specifying that child dummies be placed in child seats on the passenger seat and in unbelted sitting, kneeling, standing and lying positions.

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