WASHINGTON -- Automakers need not install more powerful front-impact airbags, a federal appeals court ruled last week.
The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia upheld airbag rules adopted in 2000. The court rejected a challenge from Public Citizen and the Center for Auto Safety. The two consumer groups wanted automakers to prove their vehicles protect unbelted mid-sized adults in 30 mph crashes. The 2000 rules were spurred by a rash of injuries and deaths, especially to children and small women, caused by airbags.