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Most people don’t give any extra thought to putting everyday objects in their car. However, a popular TikTok account is starting conversations about car safety.

ER Emily is a physician’s assistant who educates TikTokers on medical topics. Recently, she’s posted about things she would never take in the car.

A man wearing a tie and jeans bites into a cheeseburger while cradling a cell phone on his neck and holding a drink in the driver's seat of a car
Increasing your car’s safety can be as simple as putting items down and away before driving. | Paolo Cordoni via iStock

Metal straws

Emily says that metal straws can cause gruesome injuries. They can pierce the throat and damage major arteries if you’re sipping on one during a car accident. She mentions a specific unfortunate case. She claims that she doesn’t own any metal straws and would never use one in the car.


Replying to @sarahgogstetter ?METAL STRAWS- TRUE STORY ‼️ ? A sweet 4 yo boy had this serious accident and his family went public with the story to help warn others of the potential dangers ??? The controversy with metal straws

♬ original sound – Cat must’ve

Hair claw clips

In another TikTok, Emily explains how popular hair claw clips can cause injury in a car crash. The claws, which are typically made of plastic, can actually cut or even embed into the back of your head or neck. Emily says that medical staff have had to remove claw clips from people after car accidents surgically. While rare, it’s confirmed a valid safety risk by others in the comments section who have seen this injury.


? ARE HAIR CLAW CLIPS DANGEROUS?!? Yep! Can be. Wearing claw hair clips when driving is dangerous if you get into a car accident. In the Emergency Department and in the Operating Room we’ve had to surgically remove these from ?☠️ skulls. ????? I wear these hair clips to work abd when i get in the car take it out to switch with a rubber band ir scrunchie. So keep those in your car. #clawclips #hairclips #dangeroushairclips #arehairclipsdangerous #drivingwithhairclips


Other common items affecting car safety

People recently talked to an ER doc, Dr. Jared L. Ross, about items that might be unsafe to go driving around with. He mentioned that most office items can become projectiles and cause harm if not properly secured. Everyday objects he mentions include:

  • Backpacks
  • Coffee mugs
  • Laptops
  • Books

Dr. Ross also flagged propane tanks. Some people haul them around without safely strapping them down in the trunk or a truck bed.

Pets, food, and devices

Dr. Ross stressed that pets, food, and personal devices often distract drivers.

Ensure your pet is safely strapped in or crated so it doesn’t cause you to look away or make sudden unexpected movements.

Obviously, people should feel free to bring whatever they need into the car with them. It’s more a matter of being aware of the risk of injury and properly storing things to avoid items causing harm in an accident. If you’re worried about your car’s interior safety, just remember to put objects down and away before driving.