Fire department warns why you should never put your feet up on a car dashboard
A Tennessee fire department took to Facebook on August 3 to share an extremely crucial car safety tip that often gets overlooked.
The Chattanooga Fire Department shared the alarming message, which was originally posted by road safety activist Shane O'Connor on Twitter, to warn residents about the dangers of riding in a car with their feet on the dashboard.
"While traveling this weekend, I noticed many passengers had their feet on the dashboard of their car," the post read. "Airbags deploy between 100 & 220 MPH. If you ride with your feet on the dash and you're involved in an accident, the airbag may send your knees through your eye sockets."
While that may sound like a far-fetched scenario, one Georgia woman can confirm that this nightmare can, indeed, happen to anyone.
Audra Tatum says that she used to ride in cars with her feet on the dashboard all the time.
"My husband would tell me, 'If we have a wreck it's going to break your leg.' I dismissed him," she told WTVC.
But on August 2, 2015, all that changed when Tatum and her husband T-boned another vehicle on their way to pick up their two son's from her parents' house.
At the time of the crash, Tatum wasn't wearing a seat belt and was also resting her foot up against the dashboard.
The force of the airbags exploding threw her foot up into her face, shattering her nose, ankle, femur and shoulder.
Sadly, doctors told Tatum that if she had both of her feet on the floor at the time of the crash, she likely wouldn't have sustained any injuries at all.
Tatum says that she hopes that by spreading her story, she can stop others from making a tragic mistake like the one she made two years ago.
"I can't do my career as an EMS. I can't lift patients anymore," she explained. "I can't stand more than 4 hours at a time. Once I'm at that 4-hour mark I'm in tears."
"I regret it every single day. Every hour of every day because every time I put pressure on my leg I feel it...." she told WTVC. "Do not sit like that. If you sit like that you're asking for it."