Since the widespread introduction of airbags for the occupants of cars, many lives have been saved. Generally the extra cost involved has benefited the car drivers and their passengers, and this obviously provides a benefit the market will reward.
However the market has not seemed to have been as successful in driving the use of external airbags, which can save many lives.
Making drivers feel safer may lead to them driving less carefully rather than more carefully which may be one of the disadvantages of airbags to protect car occupants.
Volvo have developed and demonstrated how pedestrian airbags can save many lives. Cyclists would benefit greatly too from external airbags on cars!
Should the EU require all new cars to have Pedestrian Airbags to save lives? Surely it is only proper that drivers should bear additional costs if it will lower the pedestrian death toll of motor vehicles?
Would anyone argue that we cannot afford to put seat belts in care or even airbags? It would be just as foolish to argue that we cannot afford pedestrian airbags! Even if they cost a few grand per car extra it would be worthwhile. Governments should not apply VRT to the additional cost of pedestrian Aribags.
Volvo Develops External Airbags to Protect Pedestrians - SPIEGEL ONLINE