Harmless junk or dangerous projectile? What’s in your car?

Loose items like sunglasses won't stay put during a crash.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — The impact of a car crash is known to cause serious injuries, but there’s something else that happens during a crash that can also do serious damage.

Laura Kent, paramedic and SafeKids Coalition Coordinator for Children’s Hospital, says that stuff we keep in our cars–like sunglasses, toys, and even groceries–can turn into dangerous projectiles in a crash.

“Anything that is not tied down in your car is a projectile,” Kent said.

Kent added that she has seen projectiles cause serious injuries and even death.

“It’s a very common injury,” she said. “They can knock you out. From unconscious, to epidural head bleeds to fractured skulls. Even fracturing your neck as the stuff comes up over the back of your head.”

Kent said the best way to prevent injury is to make sure objects are secured or stored in the trunk.

“We try to strap down everything we can,” Kent said.

And for those who drive an SUV, Kent recommends pulling the shade to help keep objects in place during a crash.

People and pets can also become projectiles so Kent said it’s important to make sure all passengers are properly restrained.

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