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Convertible Caution
Thu, 19 Jun 2003, 23:00

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(NAPSI)—New technology has helped make it safer for convertible connoisseurs—and their passengers—to enjoy the thrill of the open road.

Many of today’s convertibles have new, built-in safety features that can help shield occupants from the specific dangers a crash in a convertible may present. Safety features alone, however, can not guarantee the safety of a convertible’s occupants.

“Owning and driving a convertible is a far different experience from that of a closed-roof automobile,” says Roger Ormisher, spokesperson for Volvo. “Many things may affect people’s overall safety and enjoyment when riding in convertibles.”

Ormisher recommends the following tips:

Children’s Safety

“The responsible parent needs to consider where and how to transport children when driving a convertible. Our company recommends putting children in rear seats and using approved safety seats and seatbelts” Ormisher says.

Ormisher cautions that parents should not assume technology alone will help them avoid all possible road hazards. For example, the new Volvo C70 convertible is equipped with automatic roll bars that deploy in the event of certain types of accidents. Ormisher warns, however, parents should be occupied with less dramatic concerns. Hazards such as wind, noise or small objects or road debris coming into a car while it is in motion can be serious safety risks. “Established safety policy must prevail,” he adds. “Children should ride in the rear and it may be appropriate to raise the roof for their protection from certain elements. Style may sometimes need to take a back seat to safety.”

Pet Protection

Drivers should show appropriate concern for all their passengers—human or otherwise. Dogs, for example, have acute hearing and can be frightened by traffic and ambient noise levels sometimes experienced when the top is down. Ormisher says owners should gradually expose pets to the open car environment. Over time, he says, animals will adapt to riding with the wind in their hair.

Accessorize For Safety

All convertible drivers should wear protective eye gear, sunscreen and appropriate clothing when driving with the top down. “Volvo’s goal,” says Ormisher, “is to provide a safe and enjoyable driving experience for both passenger and driver.

For more information visit

New safety features on modern convertibles have helped make them safer than ever before.

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