The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) recently endorsed the ergonomically designed seats in the entire lineup of vehicles from Volvo Car USA. While comfort is a key benefit, good ergonomics may have an impact on roadway safety as well.
The manufacturer believes sitting comfortably helps minimize driver fatigue. Drowsy driving collisions took the lives of 633 Americans in 2020 alone, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Moreover, NHTSA estimates that in 2017, 91,000 police-reported crashes involved drowsy drivers. These crashes led to an estimated 50,000 people injured and nearly 800 deaths. But there is broad agreement across the traffic safety, sleep science, and public health communities that this is an underestimate of the impact of drowsy driving.
While there is no hard evidence, a case can be made that ergonomically designed seats support better posture and improved blood flow, which can help reduce fatigue.
Comfortable seats also help drivers maximize the safety features found in and around the seats of Volvo cars. For example, a Whiplash Protection System, Side Impact Protection System, and Run Off-Road Mitigation that can help reduce risk of injury in the event of a crash are integrated into every Volvo seat, according to the manufacturer.
This is the first time an automotive manufacturer has been granted an endorsement by the ACA. The endorsement of Volvo seats runs through May 2023.