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Old 08-19-2004, 11:04 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by nettepdx
If a vehicle is equipped with airbags, it's better to be as far away from the steering wheel as possible.
At 4'11" I'd recommend having the driver's airbag disconnected. I understand that it can be legally done for petite drivers.

As I remember, studies have shown that petite persons in an accident receive more injuries from the airbag than they would have without the airbag. That's why they now say to keep kids in the back seat.

I think my niece who is about 5'2" and under 100 lbs. had her airbag disconnected in her Blazer. Again, it's that memory thing that keeps me from being certain.
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Old 08-19-2004, 11:10 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Edie G
At 4'11" I'd recommend having the driver's airbag disconnected. I understand that it can be legally done for petite drivers.

As I remember, studies have shown that petite persons in an accident receive more injuries from the airbag than they would have without the airbag. That's why they now say to keep kids in the back seat.

I think my niece who is about 5'2" and under 100 lbs. had her airbag disconnected in her Blazer. Again, it's that memory thing that keeps me from being certain.
Haha....that "memory thing" is a pain, isn't it?

I thought about having the airbags disconnected. I've never had them; figure I can live (?) without them.
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Old 08-19-2004, 11:14 AM   #17
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Agreed, Edie. At 5'3" the airbag is a concern for me as well. As I understand it you should be at least a foot away from the steering wheel. I have never had mine disconnected, but I wouldn't object to doing so. I'm all for safety devices, but I hate the idea of having an explosive charge aimed at me from a foot away!

As far as the view out a van goes, we have a regular passenger van, which has windows all around, and it's wonderful. We can see the trailer bouncing along behind us through the back doors, and all around the van through the other windows. We also use spot mirrors to keep an eye out for little cars which are too short to be seen out the big windows.

Definitly go sit in some, Annette, and see how you like them. Take a few on test drives and see if it's comfortable.Let us know what you find out.
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Old 08-19-2004, 11:15 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by nettepdx
figure I can live (?) without them.
Maybe not, from what I've heard. Don't mean to be dramatic or scare you - but this is serious business.
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Old 08-19-2004, 11:19 AM   #19
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Maybe not, from what I've heard. Don't mean to be dramatic or scare you - but this is serious business.
That's ok Edie, I'm used to being scared by you forum members
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Old 09-07-2004, 03:21 AM   #20
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Here's a lil' something

Just put "airbags short drivers" into Google to come up with this,

Adults: buckle up and sit back
It isn't your size, gender, or age that determines risk. It's position in relation to an airbag. Most adults can virtually eliminate the risk by buckling up. Neither short women nor elderly drivers are especially vulnerable if they use safety belts and sit at least 10 inches from the steering wheel.


Belted drivers potentially at risk of serious airbag injury are those sitting very close to the steering wheel. But the same drivers would be at risk without airbags because they're likely to hit the steering wheel hard -- usually with the face -- in a serious crash. They can reduce the airbag risk without sacrificing the benefits by sitting back and away from the wheel.


Most drivers, even short ones, can get at least 10 inches from the steering wheel and still reach the pedals. The problem often is that drivers sitting closer are leaning forward instead of sitting back in their seats. They need only sit back. The few who cannot get 10 inches from the steering wheel and still comfortably reach the pedals may wish to consider pedal extenders (call (800) 833-0427 for information about these).

Hope that this helps. There was also mention of illegality of deactivating airbags and that the steering wheel should be aimed at one's chest, not at the head. Also (as if this wasn't obvious) remember to wear your seatbelt! There is a reason that the airbags are part of a SRS (supplemental restraint system).

Later!
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Old 10-11-2004, 04:02 PM   #21
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shrimp update!

Hi gang, just thought I'd give some info regarding my tow vehicle.

I did end up with an E350. That thing is huge! I now have a new exercise plan called "step van aerobics". Just getting in and out of it has toned up my leg (and other) muscles

I took the van to a place that modifies vehicles for the handicapped. They added pedal extensions and a subfloor on the driver's side. Well worth the $400 I think. Next stop will be to a van accessory place to get all the accoutrements (sp?) for storage and tying things down...including the vespa.

So thanks for all the input in the thread and PM's. Watch out for me on the road
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Old 10-11-2004, 07:47 PM   #22
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Good job!

I think you'll be happy with the storage of a van.... it just takes a time to get used to the pure SIZE of one... but I love being so high up... it makes it easier to watch for accidents about to happen. On our way back from OR, I saw two near misses. Traffic stopped in the lanes next to me, and the following drivers didn't notice because they couldn't see that far ahead (and they were tailgating). I was able to slow to avoid serving drivers... if I had kept plowing ahead, they would've served right into me! One trick I have with my trailer is that I wedge a plastic piece of pipe between the sliding door of the bathroom with the oposite wall. That keeps it open so that I can see cars behind me through the trailer in my mirror.
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Old 10-12-2004, 10:02 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3Ms75Argosy
I think you'll be happy with the storage of a van.... it just takes a time to get used to the pure SIZE of one... but I love being so high up... it makes it easier to watch for accidents about to happen. On our way back from OR, I saw two near misses. Traffic stopped in the lanes next to me, and the following drivers didn't notice because they couldn't see that far ahead (and they were tailgating). I was able to slow to avoid serving drivers... if I had kept plowing ahead, they would've served right into me! One trick I have with my trailer is that I wedge a plastic piece of pipe between the sliding door of the bathroom with the oposite wall. That keeps it open so that I can see cars behind me through the trailer in my mirror.
Marc
Marc, you tow with a van? Great! I love being so high up, too. And it's a lot easier to maneuver than I thought it would be. I'd love to be able to see through to the cars behind me but that means driving with the rock guard up and I'm not sure I want to do that. But we'll see; at this point, I'm willing to try anything.

If you have any tips about securing items in the van, pass them along.
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Old 10-12-2004, 10:43 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nettepdx
Marc, you tow with a van? Great! I love being so high up, too. And it's a lot easier to maneuver than I thought it would be. I'd love to be able to see through to the cars behind me but that means driving with the rock guard up and I'm not sure I want to do that. But we'll see; at this point, I'm willing to try anything.

If you have any tips about securing items in the van, pass them along.
I just finished a 1200 mile trip with my 25' 75 Tradewind towing with my 04 Ford Excursion Dsl. It tows so fine! Whitefish Mt to Sun Valley, to Stanwood WA. Averaged 13.5 and did lots of mtn passes. Planning on a new 28' CCD soon.
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Old 10-12-2004, 01:09 PM   #25
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Quote:
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I just finished a 1200 mile trip with my 25' 75 Tradewind towing with my 04 Ford Excursion Dsl. It tows so fine! Whitefish Mt to Sun Valley, to Stanwood WA. Averaged 13.5 and did lots of mtn passes. Planning on a new 28' CCD soon.
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Bill, I've only towed my Tradewind for about 30 miles but I have to agree that she seems a breeze to tow. Wish I could've afforded a newer vehicle but, alas, I'll have to live with the 10mpg I'll probably get with the Econoline. If you plan on selling the Tradewind, let me know...not that I need another, but I may know someone who is interested. Jealous about the move to the CCD
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