Research conducted by AAA this year found that most vehicle escape tools can break tempered side windows, but none were able to break laminated glass.
WGXA News is working for you finding out why most new vehicles have glass that can’t easily be broken, even with special tools, and how you can determine which type of material your car windows are made of so you will know how to react.
“As that water starts rising, the pressure inside your car versus the pressure outside of your car is going to be different. It’s going to create a sucking motion keeping that door closed on you," said Brandon Allen, lieutenant of water rescue operations for the Orange County, FL, Fire Rescue Department.
Allen said if you're ever in this type of emergency situation, rolling down the window is also not likely because the water can affect the electrical system.
He recommends having a vehicle escape tool in your vehicle at all times to break the glass.
“It shouldn’t be in a location that you’re going to have to search for it. On a key chain, hanging on a sun visor, somewhere you can access it very quickly and know where it is," said Allen.
Vehicle escape tools can be found online or in select retailers priced anywhere from $7 to $35. So, why have one? Allen said it's difficult to break a window without it.
In a demonstration conducted by AAA, a cell phone and spikes of a headrest were both used to try and break the rear windows of a car. Both devices were unable to shatter the tempered glass, but a vehicle escape tool shattered the window instantly.
New research from AAA says most vehicle escape tools are only effective at breaking tempered glass, not the stronger laminated type.
Laminated glass is typically only found in windshields. It's designed to lessen the chance of someone being ejected from a vehicle.
AAA says more and more manufacturers are installing laminated glass on side windows.
An estimated 1-in-3 2018 models have laminated glass on side windows, according to AAA.