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Knitting in passenger seat while car is in motion

I am a knitter, and we knitters don’t like to stop knitting - even for a moment. Car rides are especially good times to knit. I have never thought about the air bag thing, but what I knit in cars are small projects that easily fit in my bag. Usually that means a pair of socks which are knit on size 2 or 3 double pointed bamboo needles. These needles are very very small and no more than 6" long. They bend during use, and break easily, and pass the airport guys long before anything else did. You would not believe how much can be done in a half an hour on a pair of socks. I always have at least one or two socks going for just this reason. Just a thought for knitters in cars with airbags.

Hi Guys, My suggestion would be to turn off the passenger air bag (assuming a switch is installed) when knitting and re;y on the seat belt. Human nature would be to throw your hands up toward the crash placing the needles in the worst possible place. Food for thought. Thanks. Tophy

Circular needles!

You don’t need to be riding in a car to have a serious accident with a knitting needle. A librarian colleague of mine fell on a knitting needle, which pierced her sternum (that’s a bone!), which was pretty hard to deal with, to say the least. And the whole story became even more complicated than that. Here’s the link to the article that appeared in Newsweek:

My father used to worry about me knitting on airplanes…I traveled a lot for work, and knitting was a way to pass the time. He would ask, “what if you crash?” As if the crash wasn’t going to be the big issue…
Now, I knit in the car to keep from bugging my husband about his driving (too fast, jack rabbit starts and stops, not braking at all, etc) Getting into the Zen of knitting, blissing out on the texture, color, the sound of the needles, and actually getting something done seems to override my control freak tendencies. It’s a safety feature…my not bugging him is a safety thing. In his mind.
He bought me some great circular needles for Christmas, and we drive peacefully, if not always slowly.
Great question, either way.

I agree, MOST knitting can be done on circular needles as well as on straight needles. The danger in any crash would be - - very unlikely. / r. a. pease / czar44

It seems like the needles might actually pierce the airbags as well. I’m not sure if that would matter at those speeds, though. This sounds like something for the Mythbusters to test.

Knitting with straight needles in a car is akin to running down the stairs with scissors. It takes very little to puncture the skin and injure you critically, and as someone already suggested, it could puncture the airbag. The forces in an accident are fara too great for you to control and the speeds with which things happen far too fast to respond too.

Remember too that hwile your driver may be an excellent driver, the roads are loaded with others who are not.

Sit in the back seat while you knit.

i would think that knitting on bamboo circular needles would be safe. the cable is flexible as are the needles.


Who can give you a definitive answer to this question?

Why, the Mythbusters!!! You must, must, must contact them with this question. It would be so cool to see both of you show up in a guest appearance on that show.

Plus, you’ll find out who “I am the walrus” refers to.

Long time fanatical fan of yours,

C’mon folks!! CIRCULAR NEEDLES!!! It’s that simple. And to make it even LESS likely that there could be any possibility of an airbag mishap, use the circulars that have light, hollow plastic or lightweight wooden tips. There are VERY few knitting projects where you can’t substitute circulars for straight needles, regardless of what any pattern states. Just don’t join the ends of the rows. Knit across and back the same way you would with straights. Problem solved!

Okay, if knitting in a car is so dangerous, where’s the outcry against writing with a pen or pencil – which is also a long pointy object, and more likely to have one end pointed at the user when the accident happens? (I don’t know about the rest of you, but when I knit, I hold the needles pointing to the side, 90 degrees away from pointing at me, and too close to rotate into stabbing position.)

I also think a crucial factor has been left out of this discussion. Knitting has a calming effect on the knitter. Scientific studies have shown that knitting produces the same calming effect as deep meditation, and you don’t even have to shave your head. (The research was conducted near Click & Clack’s Fair City: )

So the two risks that should be compared are 1) getting in an accident, the air bags go
off at the exact moment one of the knitting needles is pointing straight at you (how
often does that happen?) and you get stabbed in the heart, vs. 2) your husband’s driving
and your kids’ incessant whining drive you into a homicidal frenzy, which could have
been prevented if you had been under the calming influence of knitting.

Given the relative probabilities of those two scenarios occuring, I vote for knitting.
You even get a sweater out of the deal.

It’s my understanding that the point of the airbags is to inflate immediately, absorb the shock, and keep you from smacking into the dashboard - and after that initial impact, it doesn’t matter if they then deflate.

Any object between the occupant and an airbag inflating at 100 mph is not a good idea.

I don’t know, but knitting in passenger seat while car is in motion seems a little dangerous. A friend of mine, who works at a used cars Iowa service used to tell me that passengers do all kind of things in cars and these actions can distract the driver. Maybe a little prudence would be wise.