The door windows of automobiles do not protect from ultraviolet A light as much as the front windshield does, says a new study published online by JAMA Ophthalmology. Researchers found the protection is higher in the front windshields and lower in the side windows. This may be linked to the development of cataract and facial skin cancer.

Ultraviolet rays can be found in the sun’s rays. This light is the most dangerous for human skin since the ultraviolet rays are the ones that usually penetrate more deeply, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation.

Car door windows don't protect people from UV light
Automaker companies are now under menace as a new study has proven car door windows do not provide enough protection against ultraviolet rays. Image Credit: Tech Times

Premature aging is also one of the problems caused by the exposition to ultraviolet rays (UV Rays). Skin cancer, premature aging, and cataracts will be developed on the left side of the body, or the right, depending on where the person lives. Truck drivers have also made a strong case against UV rays. They showed how their faces have ‘aged’ more on one side in comparison to the other. This is the result of years driving on the pilot’s seat, where the sun hits people on the left side of their faces. Thus, getting more wrinkles and a more deteriorated look.

In the United States, the levels of auto glass protection against ultraviolet rays of different kinds and models of vehicles, was unknown, until now.

A study based the side windows of 29 cars

The study consisted of measuring the ultraviolet A light radiation outside the car, and behind the front windshield. It also included behind the driver’s side window. Brian Boxer Wachler, M.D., from the Boxer Wachler Vision Institute, Beverly Hills, California, studied 29 cars from 15 different manufacturers. The cars were made between 1990 and 2014, having the 2010 as the average year.

Boxer found that some cars offered a protection on their side window as low as 50 percent of blockage. The percentage of ultraviolet A rays went from 44 percent to 96 percent. Out of the 29 cars, only four could block more that 90 percent of the rays.

The study found that cars’ windshields blocked about 96 percent of ultraviolet A rays, having a range of 95 to 98 percent.

The reason for this bigger protection may be caused by the glass of windshields being made of laminated glass. This sort of glass prevents them from shattering, says Dr. Jayne Weiss in a commentary published with the study. Nonetheless, he added that car door windows are made just of tempered glass.

Source: JAMA Ophthalmology