It is one of the first lessons they teach you in driving school when you sit in the car: how you should adjust the seat, the steering wheel and the rearview mirrors to drive safely. It is not a matter of mere protocol, nor of finding maximum comfort for the driver, but rather they are fundamental premises for road safety and driving effectiveness.
The General Directorate of Traffic has shared on its profile on the social network “The driver's position is a 'tailor-made' position. That we are seated correctly is essential so that, in the event of an accident, the vehicles' passive safety systems (belts, airbags, etc.) function properly,” they warn.
The infographic shared by the DGT explains the necessary regulations in the driver's seat and other elements of the vehicle that we must review and adjust before starting the journey. Furthermore, to find the ideal position, they emphasize that we must follow the points in the following specific order.
First, adjust the seat. You must ensure that the distance from the steering wheel allows you to keep your arms half bent, to be able to maneuver. Additionally, with the clutch pedal fully depressed, the left leg should be slightly bent. Regarding the height of the bench, the eyes must be placed at mid-height of the windshield, so that visibility is complete across the width and to the end of the hood, with the legs neither far nor near the steering wheel.
Next, adjust the backrest. The inclination has to be as vertical as possible, almost at a right angle. With your back and shoulders supported, your arms should reach the steering wheel half bent. If you stretch them, your wrists rest on the steering wheel rim. For its part, the head must be a few centimeters from the headrest.
As for the steering wheel, the appropriate height and depth allow it to be held and turned comfortably. Knees that are neither too far nor too close and that the steering wheel does not interfere with the vision of the dashboard or the road.
The next point is the headrest: if it is at the right height, the back of your head is in the center of it. Both have to be aligned at the top.
Next it is time to install the rearview mirrors. The interior must be placed centrally, covering the entire rear window. Also, make sure that the passengers and rear headrests do not obstruct vision. The more open the side mirrors are, the greater the visibility and the smaller the blind spot. Remember that it is not necessary to move your head to look at them.
Finally, the seat belt should be placed just above the driver's left shoulder, over the collarbone, away from the neck, tight around the chest and abdomen. Ready, you can now start walking in the correct posture.