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|Chapter 2 - Safety|
|Supplemental Restraint System (SRS)||14|
|Occupant Weight Sensor - disabling the passenger's side front airbag||18|
|Side impact protection (SIPS) airbags||21|
|Door Mounted Inflatable Curtain (DMIC)||22|
|Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS)||23|
|Roll-over Protection system (ROPS)||25|
|Inspecting SRS system components||27|
Volvo's concern for safety
Safety is Volvo's cornerstone. Our concern dates back to 1927 when the first Volvo rolled off the production line. Three-point seat belts (a Volvo invention), safety cages, and energy-absorbing impact zones were designed into Volvo cars long before it was fashionable or required by government regulation.
We will not compromise our commitment to safety. We continue to seek out new safety features and to refine those already in our cars. You can help. We would appreciate hearing your suggestions about improving automobile safety. We also want to know if you ever have a safety concern with your car. Call us in the U.S. at: 1-800-458-1552 or in Canada at: 1-800-663-8255.
Occupant safety reminders
How safely you drive doesn't depend on how old you are but rather on:
The following suggestions are intended to help you cope with the ever changing traffic environment.
Reporting safety defects in the
If you believe that your vehicle has a defect which could cause a crash or could cause injury or death, you should immediately inform the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in addition to notifying Volvo Cars of North America. If NHTSA receives similar complaints, it may open an investigation, and if it finds that a safety defect exists in a group of vehicles, it may order a recall and remedy campaign. However, NHTSA cannot become involved in individual problems between you, your retailer, or Volvo Cars of North America.
To contact NHTSA, you may either call the Auto Safety Hotline toll-free at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY: 1-800-424-9153) or write to: NHTSA, U.S. Department of Transportation, Washington D.C. 20590. You can also obtain other information about motor vehicle safety from the Hotline.
Volvo strongly recommends that if your vehicle is covered under a service campaign, safety or emission recall or similar action, it should be completed as soon as possible. Please check with your local retailer or Volvo Cars of North America, LLC if your vehicle is covered under these conditions.
NHTSA can be reached at:
Using seat belts
Volvo, the inventor of the three-point seat belt, urges you and all occupants of your vehicle to wear seat belts and ensure that children are properly restrained, using an infant, car, or booster seat determined by age, weight and height.
Volvo also believes no child should sit in the front seat of a vehicle.
Most states and provinces make it mandatory for occupants of a vehicle to use seat belts.
Seat belt tensioners
The front and rear seat belts are equipped with tensioners that reduce slack in the belts. These tensioners are triggered in situations where the airbags deploy. The front seat belts also include a tension reducing device which, in the event of a collision, limits the peak forces exerted by the seat belt on the occupant.
Buckling a seat belt
Pull the belt out far enough to insert the latch plate into the receptacle until a distinct click is heard. The seat belt retractor is normally "unlocked" and you can move freely, provided that the shoulder belt is not pulled out too far. The retractor will lock up as follows:
When wearing the seat belt remember:
Unbuckling the seat belt
Never use a seat belt for more than one occupant. Never wear the shoulder portion of the belt under the arm, behind the back or otherwise out of position. Such use could cause injury in the event of an accident. As seat belts lose much of their strength when exposed to violent stretching, they should be replaced after any collision, even if they appear to be undamaged.
Seat belt use during pregnancy
The seat belt should always be worn during pregnancy. But it is crucial that it be worn in the correct way. The diagonal section should wrap over the shoulder then be routed between the breasts and to the side of the belly. The lap section should lay flat over the thighs and as low as possible under the belly. It must never be allowed to ride upward. Remove all slack from the belt and insure that it fits close to the body without any twists.
As a pregnancy progresses, pregnant drivers should adjust their seats and steering wheel such that they can easily maintain control of the vehicle as they drive (which means they must be able to easily operate the foot pedals and steering wheel). Within this context, they should strive to position the seat with as large a distance as possible between their belly and the steering wheel.
Please refer to page 30 for information on securing child seats with the seat belts.
Seat belt reminder
The seat belt reminder consists of an audible signal, an indicator light above the rearview mirror, and a symbol in the instrument panel (see page 35 ) that alert the driver and front seat passenger if their seat belts are not fastened.
NOTE: The function is active for a total of 6 minutes from the time the ignition is switched on.
During the first minute:
The seat belt reminder function only reacts if the driver has not fastened his/her seat belt.
After one minute has elapsed:
The seat belt reminder reacts if the driver and/or the front seat passenger have not fastened their seat belts.
Seat belt maintenance
Check periodically that the seat belts are in good condition. Use water and a mild detergent for cleaning. Check seat belt mechanism function as follows: attach the seat belt and pull rapidly on the strap.
Supplemental Restraint System
As an enhancement to the three-point seat belts, your Volvo is equipped with a Supplemental Restraint System (SRS). Volvo's SRS consists of seat belt tensioners, front airbags, side impact airbags, the occupant weight sensor, and inflatable curtains. All of these systems are monitored by the SRS control module. An SRS warning light in the instrument panel (see the illustration above) illuminates when the ignition key is turned to position I, II, or III, and will normally go out after approximately 7 seconds if no faults are detected in the system.
Where applicable, a text message will also be displayed when the SRS warning light illuminates. If this warning symbol is not functioning properly, the general warning symbol illuminates and a text message will be displayed.
If your vehicle has been subjected to flood conditions (e.g. soaked carpeting/ standing water on the floor of the vehicle) or if your vehicle has become flood-damaged in any way, do not attempt to start the vehicle or put the key in the ignition before disconnecting the battery (see below). This may cause airbag deployment which could result in personal injury. Have the vehicle towed to a trained and qualified Volvo service technician for repairs.
The front airbag system
The front airbags supplement the three-point seat belts. For these airbags to provide the protection intended, seat belts must be worn at all times.
The front airbag system includes gas generators (1) surrounded by the airbags (2) and a deceleration sensor (3) that activates the gas generators, causing the airbags to be inflated with nitrogen gas.
As the movement of the seats' occupants
compresses the airbags, some of the gas is
expelled at a controlled rate to provide better
cushioning. Both seat belt tensioners also
deploy, minimizing seat belt slack. The entire
process, including inflation and deflation of
the airbags, takes approximately one fifth of a
The location of the front airbags is indicated by "SRS AIRBAG" embossed on the steering wheel pad and above the glove compartment, and by decals on both sun visors and on the front and far right side of the dash.
Front airbag deployment
However, not all frontal collisions activate the front airbags.
Should you have questions about any component in the SRS system, please contact a trained and qualified Volvo service technician or Volvo Customer Support:
In the USA
Volvo Cars of North America
Customer Care Center
P.O. Box 914 Rockleigh, New Jersey 07647-0914
Volvo Cars of Canada Ltd.
National Customer Service
175 Gordon Baker Road
North York, Ontario M2H 2N7
a. See also the Occupant Weight Sensor information on page 18.
Failure to follow these instructions can result in injury to the vehicle occupants.
Disabling the passenger's side front airbag
Volvo recommends that ALL occupants (adults and children) shorter than 4 feet 7 inches (140 cm) be seated in the back seat of any vehicle with a front passenger side airbag, and be properly restrained for their size and weight. See also the child safety recommendations on page 30.
The passenger's side front airbag is automatically enabled/disabled by the Occupant Weight Sensor (OWS), a system that monitors the weight of the person or object in the front passenger's seat. The system consists of a silicone-filled bag located under the padding in the front passenger's seat cushion, a control module located under this seat, and a seat belt tension sensor, located on the outboard side of the seat.
The OWS system continuously monitors the
pressure on the front passenger's seat
cushion and the tension applied to the seat
belt. Based on this data, OWS assesses the
weight of the occupant or object in the front
passenger's seat. This information is transmitted
to the SRS system control module,
which enables or disables the passenger's
side front airbag accordingly, as indicated in
the table on the following page.
If the system is functioning normally, the status of the front passenger's side airbag (enabled/disabled) will be shown by the OWS indicator light as explained in the table on the following page. The OWS indicator light is separate and in addition to the SRS warning light in the instrument panel.
NOTE: When the ignition is switched on, the
OWS indicator light will go on for up to 10
seconds while the system performs a self-diagnostic
test. The light will then go out
unless the seat is occupied by a low weight
However, if a fault is detected in the system:
If a fault in the system is detected and indicated as explained on the preceding page, be aware that the passenger's side front airbag will not deploy in the event of a collision. In this case, the SRS system and Occupant Weight Sensor should be inspected by a trained and qualified Volvo service technician as soon as possible.
a. Volvo recommends that children always be properly restrained in appropriate child restraints in the rear seats. In rare situations when the seat belt is not latched, some child restraint systems may not be detected by the OWS because there is very little weight on the vehicle seat cushion. In these cases the airbag may be turned off but the "passenger airbag off" indicator would not be lit. DO NOT assume the front passenger airbag is turned off unless the indicator is lit. Make sure the child restraint is properly belted and that the indicator is lit, or move the child restraint to the rear seat.
If you are considering modifying your vehicle in any way to accommodate a disability, for example by altering or adapting the driver's or front passenger's seat(s) and/or airbag systems, please contact Volvo at:
In the USA
Volvo Cars of North America
Customer Care Center
P.O. Box 914 Rockleigh, New Jersey 07647-0914
Volvo Cars of Canada Ltd.
National Customer Service
175 Gordon Baker Road
North York, Ontario M2H 2N7
Keep the following points in mind with respect to the OWS system. Failure to follow these instructions could adversely affect the system's function and result in serious injury to the occupant of the front passenger's seat:
Side impact airbags - front seats
As an enhancement to the structural side impact protection built into your car, the car is also equipped with Side Impact Protection System (SIPS) airbags.
The SIPS airbag system is designed to help increase occupant protection in the event of certain side impact collisions. The SIPS airbags are designed to deploy only during certain side-impact collisions, depending on the crash severity, angle, speed and point of impact.
NOTE: SIPS airbag deployment (one airbag) occurs only on the side of the vehicle affected by the impact. The airbags are not designed to deploy in all side impact situations.
Components in the SIPS airbag system
This SIPS airbag system consists of a gas generator (1), the side airbag modules built into the outboard sides of both front seat backrests (2), and electronic sensors/wiring (3).
The Door Mounted Inflatable
The DMIC is a supplement to the structural side impact protection. These inflatable curtains are concealed in the upper section of the driver and passenger doors.
In order for the DMIC to provide its best protection, both front seat occupants should sit in an upright position with the seat belt properly fastened; adults using the seat belt and children using the proper child restraint system. Only adults should sit in the front seats. Children must never be allowed in the front passenger seat. See page 30 for guidelines. Failure to follow these instructions can result in injury to the vehicle occupants in an accident.
Whiplash Protection System
(WHIPS) - front seats only
The WHIPS system consists of specially designed hinges and brackets on the front seat backrests designed to help absorb some of the energy generated in a collision from the rear (when the vehicle is "rear-ended"). In the event of a collision of this type, the hinges and brackets of the front seat backrests are designed to change position slightly to allow the backrest/head restraint to help support the occupant's head before moving slightly rearward. This movement helps absorb some of the forces that could result in whiplash.
Occupants in the front seats must never sit out of position. The occupant's back must be as upright as comfort allows and be against the seat back with the seat belt properly fastened.
Boxes, suitcases, etc. wedged behind the front seats could impede the function of the WHIPS system.
Roll-over Protection system
The ROPS system consists of two roll bars located behind the rear seat head restraints, and a sensor that monitors the roll or pitch angle of the car.
If the car rolls or pitches beyond a preset angle, the roll bars are automatically deployed (raised).
Driving after a collision
If the car has been involved in a collision, the text CRASH STATUS SEE MANUAL may appear in the information display. This indicates that the car's functionality has been reduced.
NOTE: This text can only be shown if the display is undamaged and the car's electrical system is intact.
COLLISION STATUS is a feature that is triggered if one or more of the safety systems (e.g. front or side airbags, an inflatable curtain, or one or more of the seat belt tensioners) has deployed. The collision may have damaged an important function in the car, such as the fuel lines, sensors for one of the safety systems, the brake system, etc.
Attempting to start the car
If damage to the car is minor and there is no fuel leakage, you may attempt to start the car. To do so:
Moving the car
If the electrical system is able to reset system status to normal (CRASH STATUS SEE MANUAL will no longer be shown in the display), the car may be moved carefully from its present position, if for example, it is blocking traffic. It should, however, not be moved farther than is absolutely necessary.
Even if the car appears to be drivable after COLLISION STATUS has been set, it should not be driven or towed (pulled by another vehicle). There may be concealed damage that could make it difficult or impossible to control. The car should be transported on a flatbed tow truck to a trained and qualified Volvo service technician for inspection/repairs.
1. Driver's side airbag
2. Passenger's side airbag
3. Side airbag on the driver's side
4. Side airbag on the passenger's side
5. Driver's side inflatable curtain
6. Passenger's side inflatable curtain
There is no owner maintenance that can be performed on the SRS system. The month and year shown on the decal to the right (located on door pillar) indicate when you should contact your Volvo retailer for specific servicing or replacement of airbag system components. This service must be performed by a trained and qualified Volvo service technician.
Children should be seated safely
Volvo recommends the proper use of restraint systems for all occupants including children. Remember that, regardless of age and size, a child should always be properly restrained in a car.
Your car is also equipped with ISOFIX/ LATCH attachments, which make it more convenient to install child seats.
Some restraint systems for children are designed to be secured in the vehicle by lap belts or the lap portion of a lap-shoulder belt. Such child restraint systems can help protect children in cars in the event of an accident only if they are used properly. However, children could be endangered in a crash if the child restraints are not properly secured in the vehicle. Failure to follow the installation instructions for your child restraint can result in your child striking the vehicle's interior in a sudden stop.
Holding a child in your arms is NOT a suitable substitute for a child restraint system. In an accident, a child held in a person's arms can be crushed between the vehicle's interior and an unrestrained person. The child could also be injured by striking the interior, or by being ejected from the vehicle during a sudden maneuver or impact. The same can also happen if the infant or child rides unrestrained on the seat. Other occupants should also be properly restrained to help reduce the chance of injuring or increasing the injury of a child.
All states and provinces have legislation governing how and where children should be carried in a car. Find out the regulations existing in your state or province. Recent accident statistics have shown that children are safer in rear seating positions than front seating positions when properly restrained. A child restraint system can help protect a child in a vehicle. Here's what to look for when selecting a child restraint system:
When a child has outgrown the child safety seat, you should use the rear seat with the standard seat belt fastened. The best way to help protect the child here is to place the child on a cushion so that the seat belt is properly located on the hips. Legislation in your state or province may mandate the use of a child seat or cushion in combination with the seat belt, depending on the child's age and/or size. Please check local regulations.
A specially designed and tested booster cushion (not available in Canada) can be obtained from your Volvo retailer for children weighing 33 - 80 lb. (15 - 36 kg) and 38-54 inches (97 - 137 cm) in height.
Do not use child safety seats or child
booster cushions/backrests in the front
passenger's seat. We also recommend
that children under 4 feet 7 inches (140
cm) in height who have outgrown these
devices sit in the rear seat with the seat
Lower anchors for ISOFIX-equipped child seats are located in the rear seats, hidden below the backrest cushions. Symbols on the seat back upholstery mark the anchor positions as shown. To access the anchors, kneel on the seat cushion and locate the anchors by feel. Always follow your child seat manufacturer's installation instructions.
Automatic Locking Retractor/
Emergency Locking Retractor
To make child seat installation easier, each seat belt (except for the driver's belt) is equipped with a locking mechanism to help keep the seat belt taut.
When attaching the seat belt to a child seat:
A sound from the seat belt retractor will be audible at this time and is normal. The belt will now be locked in place. This function is automatically disabled when the seat belt is unlocked and the belt is fully retracted.
Why does Volvo believe that no child should sit in the front seat of a car? It's quite simple really. A front airbag is a very powerful device designed, by law, to help protect an adult.
Because of the size of the airbag and its speed of inflation, a child should never be placed in the front seat, even if he or she is properly belted or strapped into a child safety seat. Volvo has been an innovator in safety for over seventy-five years, and we'll continue to do our part. But we need your help. Please remember to put your children in the back seat, and buckle them up.
Do not use child safety seats or child booster cushions/backrests in the front passenger's seat. We also recommend that children who have outgrown these devices sit in the rear seat with the seat belt properly fastened.
Volvo has some very specific recommendations: