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Should you really hold the wheel at 10 and 2?

| May 18, 2020 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

For decades, driving instructors told their students to hold the wheel at “10 and 2,” meaning the positions where 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock would be if the wheel was actually the face of that clock. The idea was simply to get drivers to keep both hands on the wheel, near the top, where they would have the most control over the car.

Is that something you should still be doing? If you learned that rule years ago, it may be time to think about it again. Many instructors are now suggesting 3 and 9 or even 4 and 8 as the new hand placements.

Why has this changed? Most of it has to do with the invention of the airbag. If your hands are too high on the wheel, the airbag will strike your arms when it deploys during a crash. That can injure your arms directly or cause them to strike you in the face. Lowering your hands allows the bag to deploy between your arms.

Is this a perfect solution? It’s not. The lower your hands move, the less control you have, some researchers claim. That could make an accident more likely. Is it worth it to reduce the odds of injuring your arms in an accident if you also increase the odds of getting into that accident in the first place? There is a bit of a balancing act here that drivers have to consider.

Regardless, we know that serious accidents happen every day in Arizona. If you get injured due to another party’s negligence, you may have a right to compensation for medical bills and other costs.

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