If the backseat is the safest place for children riding on Oklahoma roads, would the third-row seat be even safer? There is little information on MVA injuries affecting passengers in these seats. However, some data is starting to come out.
Real world vs. crash testing
So far, there is no differentiation in real-world accident reporting specifying whether a passenger sat in the front, the backseat, or the third row. Experiments with crash test dummies focus primarily on head-on collision data versus rear-end accidents.
Bettering the odds of walking away from a crash
Families with children like the third row seating because it allows for the transport of multiple passengers without cramming everyone in the second row. Therefore, they reason, it should be safer. Moreover, while many MVA injuries are indeed minor, there are some that become life altering.
As a general rule, any child sitting in the third row must ride in a car seat appropriate for their age, height, and weight. Additionally, you must be sure to buckle in the seat or base according to the manufacturer’s specifications. Anyone not sitting in a child seat must wear their seat belt across the chest with a lap belt across the hips. Your third row seats should have head rests for everyone sitting there.
No guarantee of safety
While crash test data focuses on front impact, many accidents actually happen with a side impact. In other cases, a vehicle rear-ends yours. In these cases, it is unclear how the third row seats perform. Following the safety guidelines offers some security. However, if you or a loved one suffered injuries while seated in the third row, consider talking to a lawyer to protect your rights.