Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Comfort and Safety Lying Down in Car?

Is there are car in which it is safe to lie down? I don’t mean a big RV, but a sedan/small SUV/small van. I can’t sit, and need a vehicle in which I can lie all the way flat, not at the usual 140 degree angle of most car seats. I prefer to lie flat in the passenger seat, but if that’s not possible, I’d be interested in any kind of vehicle that has safety restraints for a is lying down passenger. Thanks for any info you can provide.

The seat belts pretty much determine the best way a passenger should sit or recline. I really don 't know of any way you can fully recline in a standard car or SUV safely, short of adopting a stretcher posture assumed by ambulances in a converted van. Given that safety is more a function of not getting into an accident, I would only suggest that if you fully recline without the proper restraint, you have the driver drive slowly and on less traveled routes.

I think you’ll need to talk to a company that customizes cars for the disabled. Nothing from the factory is going to do what you’re asking.

Get any car with a large, or long, enough back seat. That handles the comfort part.

As for safety there isn’t any way to make you safe lying in the back seat. All the restraints are designed for upright passengers. All the crash testing with dummies have them seated upright. You will need to devise a “custom” restraint system.

The function of the system is to keep you from “flying” around the cabin in the event of an accident. There are restraint systems for dogs coming on the market and perhaps something can be customized for you using some belts, clips, and harnesses available. A visit to Petco or shopping online for dog restraints might yield some results. There might also be a “racing” harness that you could wear and find a way to attach it to the seat belt buckles and anchors.

An unrestrained passenger lying in the back seat is dangerous for that passenger, but also a danger to the driver and any other passengers. You can deal with the safety of others by installing a “cage” which is a heavy wire barrier bolted in behind the front seat. This will limit your flying around to the back seat and protect the front seat passengers. These cages are used in taxi cabs and police cars and can be installed by any good body shop.

Thank you for your suggestions. I like the dog restraint idea.

There is, they are called “ambulance”