2001 Focus Airbags

My daughter was in an accident with her Focus on Tuesday. A 90 year old woman turned in front of her and my daughter didn't even have enough time to hit the brakes. The Focus is totaled, but something my daughter said about
the airbags is bothering me. She said that when the airbags went off, both the drivers and passengers side airbags deployed, but while the passenger side airbad deflated the drivers side then "exploded". I haven't had a chance to really inspect the car carefully enough to really determine what happened, my question is does this sound normal? I realize that it would be easy enough for someone to think that the bag "exploded" when it deployed, but she definately said that the "explosion" came after the initial deployment. When I do get a chance tomorrow to inspect the car, what should I expect to see with the bags? Should there be any opening in the bags or should they remain intact? Thanks for any help.......
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Chris Warner wrote:

They're supposed to deflate rapidly once they activate. Otherwise you would just bounce off them, rather than get slowed down. They have small holes in the side which allow the gas to escape. See http://auto.howstuffworks.com/airbag.htm for a full explanation. The passenger airbag didn't deflate as fast because nothing hit it to force the gas out.
Gary
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Ok, I went and looked at the car today and what I saw is not what I expected. The drivers side airbag was split right in the middle where she would have hit the bag. This doesn't appear right to me.....at least not what I would have expected. The passenger side bad was totally intact, but as someone said there was nothing that would have impacted that bad.
As far as injuries go, she does have a little rash (at least that is what I would call it) on her arms from the bad, but the seatbelt really got her. She has one of the nastiest looking bruises from the top of her shoulder to her waist. This leads me to believe that the bad probably did not function totally as it was intended to. I wouldn't have expected this type of bruising if the bag had absorbed the impact as it was intended to. She also has some damage in the ribcage area...nothing broken but soft tissue damage. She also is having some neck problems.

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I'm glad your daughter will be OK. Sorry about the car. I've never even seen an airbag, but what you describe does not sound right. I hope I never do see an airbag.
Rob
--------------------------
"Chris Warner" wrote ...

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Hi this sounds like there was a bad airbag. They don΄t have to split anywhere, they just have some openings at the sides to let the gas out in a controlled manner. The problems with the neck could be a result of this bad airbag. bye Jupp
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Re: your daughter's injuries, it sounds all safety devices worked. Large, ugly, seat-belt sized bruises are normal after a good whollup. The air bags are supplemental and will LESSON the neck snapping and deceleration. Glad your daughter survived with just bruises and a stiff neck. Seatbelts and airbags are not good enough to save many people involved in car crashes. It's amazing how fragile our bodies really are when they are subjected to sudden deceleration.
--
Raider Rick

"Just drive, baby"
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You didn't say but it sounds like your daughter was not seriously injured. From this I conclude that her airbag worked as intended, no matter what her recollection. I do not question her honesty, but memories of traumatic and sudden events can be somewhat unreliable. As Gary said, airbags are supposed to deflate rapidly to cushion the impact of the body, and I'm sure such deflation would produce noise.
But by all means have the wreckage examined if you want to. It can't hurt.
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Does it really matter what the airbags do (as long as they work
As long as your daughter is ok that is all that matters.
Hope the old duffer gets her licence taken away.
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