Active Safety and Passive Safety

Modern automobiles come with a host of safety features to protect occupants and pedestrians in the event of a crash. There are also safety systems that help prevent crashes in the first place. These safety features are divided into two categories namely, active safety features and passive safety features


Active Safety Features




Safety features designed to prevent an accident from taking place are all categorised as active safety features. Systems such as cruise control, Anti-lock Braking System, Traction Control System are all categorised as active safety features as they are active when the vehicle is moving and step in whenever necessary to prevent a crash. 

Other safety features such as seat belts and airbags, etc are also categorised as active safety features as they change position in the event of a crash. Seat belts with pre-pensioners tighten to hold the passengers in place in the event of a crash. Airbags are deployed to cushion passengers in case of an impact. 



Passive Safety Feature




Passive safety features are built into the structure of a vehicle to protect the occupants in the event of a crash. Examples of passive safety features are laminated windshields that do not shatter when they break. Tempered glass breaks into granules without sharp edges when they break. Crumple zones are metal panels in the body of a car that are designed to fold and absorb the energy of an impact. Crumple zones are designed to dissipate energy from an impact away from the passenger cabin to keep the occupants safe. Other passive safety features are side impact beams and roll cages that absorb energy from an impact and stop the passenger cabin of a car caving in on occupants, a collapsible steering column folds away between the drivers legs to prevent chest injury to the driver in the event of a crash.