Majority of drivers ignore headrest safety

Written by: Abaranji Sivakumar, Last updated:14th February 2022

Majority of drivers ignore headrest safety

Correctly positioning the headrest in a vehicle can provide a considerable boost to safety for motorists, but many people remain unaware of this fact, new research has shown.

According to a survey of 1,000 UK motorists carried out by road safety charity Brake on behalf of breakdown services provider Green Flag, almost two-thirds (63 per cent) of drivers are unaware of the appropriate position for a vehicle headrest in order to limit the risk of serious injury in the event of a crash.

Furthermore, 64 per cent of respondents stated they do not check their headrest before embarking on a journey.

Failure to properly set up the headrest can mean the neck and head do not receive the proper support should the car come to an unexpected and swift stop or suffer a rear-end shunt.

This can lead to an increased likelihood of individuals suffering injuries like whiplash – an injury that combined costs European insurers £7.5 billion in claims annually.

Rob Miles, director of car insurance at Direct Line, said: “The headrest’s primary function may be confused as being one of comfort, when they are, in fact, an important safety feature – but only when used correctly.

“Whiplash can occur even in low-speed crashes, so adjusting your headrest correctly is a simple precaution worth taking.”

Alice Bailey, campaigns and communications officer for Brake, added that all drivers should take the time to understand the correct positioning for the headrests in their vehicles, as the simple act of doing so can help to prevent years of unnecessary pain in the event of an accident.