Most drivers get in their automobiles and drive with no thought to possible dangers within. They are focused on dangers presented by other drivers and road and weather conditions. They have no idea that the new car smell may not be benign after all. There are dangerous fumes emitted from the car upholstery and other interior components that can hurt the driver and passengers riding in the automobile. Some simple actions can cut the risk of health dangers from toxic fumes.
Parking the automobile in a cool shady place or an enclosed garage where it will not become over heated will prevent many parts of the automobile from out gassing chemicals. Many chemicals found in interior components of cars do not become a problem unless the interior of the automobile becomes very hot. If one must park outdoors, pick a shady spot if possible.
Before entering your automobile open the door and let the air out for a few minutes before getting in. This will allow a super heated vehicle to cool off somewhat and be more comfortable to ride in. Once in the automobile, open windows for a few minutes to air out the vehicle before turning on the air conditioning. Turning on the air-conditioning right away can make the problem of fumes worse.
Car Manufacturers are doing much better not using chemicals like asbestos in car parts like brake pads, hood liners, clutch plates, etc. as much today. Long-term exposure to asbestos has been linked to an aggressive cancer called mesothelioma. The chemical fumes and particles inside the vehicle that you need to be concerned with are lead, Bisphenol (BPA), Benzene, Bromine, Chlorine (PVC), Cadmium, Arsenic and Mercury. Many of these chemicals are considered carcinogens, meaning they can contribute to the cause of cancer. Many of these chemicals are used in the dashboard and other plastic components of automobile interiors. Others are found on or in the fabrics used for upholstery in automobiles. Many environmental and consumer safety groups are pressuring automobile companies to use safer materials in manufacturing their vehicles. Progress is being made by many automobile manufacturers to make safer automobiles inside as well as outside. There are lists available to find the safest automobiles to purchase concerning interior fumes.
To be safe in whatever automobile you are driving, purchase ones that have the least dangerous chemicals used on the interiors, air out the vehicle before getting in, don’t turn the air conditioner on until you have driven with the windows open for a few minutes and park inside or in the shade when possible.
– By Brian Turner
(Special thanks to our reader Brian Turner for the article, you guys also keep sending us more articles)