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Hyundai showcases multi-collision airbag system

Hyundai has developed what is claimed to be the world's first multi-collision airbag system. The system will be introduced on new Hyundai and Kia models in the future.

Multi-collision accidents are those in which the primary impact is followed by a secondary collision with other vehicles or roadside objects such as trees, electrical poles, medians and barriers. Current airbag systems do not offer secondary protection when the initial impact is insufficient to cause them to deploy. 

Hyundai claims that the multi-collision airbag system allows airbags to deploy upon secondary impact. The system is said to detect occupant position after the initial collision and recalibrate the collision intensity required for deployment of airbags. This is said to make the airbag system respond more promptly during the secondary impact, thereby improving the safety of the occupants of the vehicles.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 30% of all accidents involve a secondary impact. The highest number of multi-collision accidents involved cars crossing the over the centre line. Secondary impacts were also reported in collisions caused by a sudden stop at highway toll gates, impacts with medians, sideswiping and collision with trees and electric poles.

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