What's the proper way to grip the steering wheel?

Is it still 10-and-2?
by Jason Tulio | Jun 25, 2017


If we gathered up a group of you readers and asked the question posed in the title, we'd probably be met with just as many different answers. So, which is the right way? Is it 10-and-2? 8-and-4? Right hand at 12 and the left hand hanging out the window? (If you're unsure about what these numbers mean, imagine the steering wheel is a clock face and the time placements are hand positions.)

Back when I attended driving school about a decade ago, my instructor said that 10-and-2 was the sure bet for hand placement while driving. This was also drummed into me by my dad and uncles. And this has generally been the accepted wisdom for as long as I can remember. With the advancement of new technology, however, it might be time to switch to a new method.

According to this story by NBC News, experts are now recommending that drivers place their hands at 9-and-3. This is due to airbags now being incorporated inside the steering column. These safety devices are designed to deploy upwards in case of an accident. Placing your hands at 10-and-2, then, potentially puts them in the way of the plastic cover when it opens. Considering that hot nitrogen gas flashes and inflates the bag at high speeds, your fingers, hands, arms, and even your face can get injured in the process. 

Ouch. Better safe than sorry, we figure. How do you guys place your hands on the wheel? 

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