The Dangerous-Crippling High Effort Steering System on the Chevrolet - Impala
The stiff/tight/heavy "High Effort Steering" system the world-wide automotive industry has designed into their vehicles is
silently and painlessly inflicting serious permanent crippling injuries, chronic pain, inflammation, and other  injures to our
skeletal system and soft tissues of our bodies.         
Hands and fingers are becoming bent and twisted, developing physical functional movement restrictions, rotor-cuff injures
with operations leaving limited arm movement and chronic pain.  Chronic back pain which requires operations involving
fusion, steel rods, disk replacement and in some cases death from the operation.  Carpal tunnel symptoms, numbness in
fingers from collapsed and many more serious ailments and much more.   
How can my vehicles steering cause these problems?  The "high effort steering" exceeds the physical capabilities of
our body to deliver the forces to overcome the resistance of the steering wheel to turn.  Our body must deliver more force
than just the resistance of the wheel to turn. Years ago the steering wheel could be turned with the small finger (Low
Effort Steering)  Even when parking.  Todays vehicles have steering wheels that are hard to turn.  Require the whole
hand or both hands.  Pump sizes have been reduced, weight of steering wheel, advertising campaigns such as "feel the
road," "take charge of your car."  There is a higher profit in smaller pumps and tubes for the hydraulics.  But, even the
Chevrolet Malibu with it's new electronic steering has a built in damaging hesitation in the wheel, requiring a shock load
to the drivers body.  
How is the damage inflicted in our body?  We inflict the damage as mini-traumas as we generate the forces to
overcome the resistance of the wheel to turn. As a result of the quick response needed for steering the vehicle, we
subject our bodies to shock loading mini-traumas.  These shock loads cause the damage to our bodies.

One
example of shock loading is a driver sitting unsupported in the seat.  To turn the "high effort steering" wheel, the
hip joints, ankles, and knees become the foundation/support for the  forces to be delivered from the hips to the fingers.  
There is a force loss in every angle between the hip joints and the end of the fingers, because the force is being
diverted.  Our body does not automatically know what force is required to overcome the resistance of the steering
wheel, because each position entails different angles. Our senses control the mechanical movement of our body
through immediate feedback to the brain.  Delivering the force is
not a smooth process due to the variable angles
involved and their changing during the process.  Thus the body provides mini vibrations in its delivery which adds to the
shock loading effects.  Road vibrations, etc, add to this as mini-mini traumas.
The overall requirement of turning the wheel is a destructive task in itself because the body actually throws the weight
of the upper torso into turning the wheel (a natural occurring event due to the wheels resistance).
The 2000 Chevrolet Impala I purchased new from a dealer in Detroit has "high effort steering" (HES) and everyone I
have interviewed shares the many physical health problems I have experienced.  If you are driver of a HES systems
vehicle...it would behoove you to try to find a "Low Effort Steering" vehicle.  However, I have not been able to find one
which hasn't had an initial resistance to turning.

Below are pictures of skeletal problems developed from driving a 2000 Chevrolet-Impala, unless otherwise noted.
This is a comfortable position to hold the Impala
steering wheel for highway driving.                  
Unfortunately, the driver isn't aware of the damage
being inflicted because the vibration in the steering
wheel numbs the hands as well as the AC when it is
running.
Look closely and see if you can notice the twisted
and bent that have deformed to making full contact
with their gripping surface angles.
Shock loads causing the knuckles and fingers to
bent and twist to conform to the contour happens
during the process of delivering the high effort forces
required to overcome the steering system
resistance to turning. Each single high effort force
results in accumulated bone structure/surface
damage and body inflammation
Initially the position and holding the wheel with the left
hand and elbow rested on the window sill, were
comfortable for extended highway driving.  However, I
never realized the presence of dynamic forces and joint
and bone deformities.
Elbow resting on window sill, resulted in extensive
physical therapy to get my left shoulder and arm to move
again.  
The right hand became my favored hand.....but it lead to
severe fingers twisting and bending and LOSS of THUMB
USE.  Gripping strength is restricted to the inner finger
joints and weight sensitive.
Loss of physical functional use of the hands is detrimental
to everyday functionality
This is how fingers can become
bent and twisted from grasping the
steering in this position.
This would not happen if the
steering wheel could be turned with
less effort and wasn't so thick.
Look closely.  The 7 K numbers represent the various
knuckle contact with the steering wheel surface.  The
surfaces which are not parallel to the natural bending of
the knuckles.
K2 represents the second knuckle from the tip of the
right index finger.  K3 represents the first knuckle back
for the finger tip.

Compare the K3 and K2 knuckle positions with the index
finger on the next picture below.  Now you can see how
the index has bent and twisted to conform to the
grasping surface of the steering wheel.
Though the above picture indicates K11 being the resting
spot for the small finger, in this picture the small is shown as
positioned to the right of the K9 line.  As you can see...the
small finger bends to conform to the radius to the right of the
K9 line.
My friends and I conceived arthritis as being something that
was inevitable.  But, it doesn't have to be.  We do not have to
live with arthritis anymore.  Product designs can easily
accommodate the reality that the skeletal system has a
Material Creep force tolerance threshold and that threshold
is a variable based upon the process of delivery and receipt
of the forces.
There is no reason for continued physical cartilage and disk
degeneration anymore.
The bending and twisting noted in these 2 pictures is a result of my fingers bending and twisting to conform
of the steering wheel of my 2000 Chevrolet Impala.  Steering with has such a high effort required to turn it,
that it is damaging all drivers.  It is impossible to hold the steering wheel in any position that will not cause
harm.
It is unsafe in any position!  Damage is inflicted in both small and large frames.  Damage appears faster in
smaller framed people.  Small framed ladies that drive these vehicles quite often, such as police patrol, will
suffer chromic back pain, noticeable bent and twisted fingers, and shoulder problems.  
My Dangerous Impala Steering
If you drive an Impala your fingers and knuckles are silently and painlessly becoming bent and
twisted, your thumbs are bending outward from the hand, and it may have progressed to loss
of thumb use.  You may have chronic back pain, shoulder and neck pain, carpal tunnel
symptoms, disk compression in your neck and lower back, finger tingling/numbness, reduced
gripping strength, increases in headaches, painful hips, knee problems, fatigue, sleeping
problems, arthritic fingers.  You may have had one or more operation on your back, neck,
shoulder or both shoulders, and carpal tunnel on one wrist, inflammation and physical pain.  
2000 Chevrolet Impala.  This is a picture of holding the steering wheel
in the 2 o'clock position.  
During the process of the body delivering the high forces necessary to
overcome the steering system's resistance to turning.....the thumb
delivers a force to turn the wheel, which is a dynamic force, and results
in a shock load (mini trauma) between the grasping surface of the
wheel and the joints of the thumb.  Each and every dynamic force
results in accumulative damage, which results in thumb deformities
shown below.
Picture 28-7 is a picture of an 85 year-young lady. She stopped driving when she was 80.  
Her fingers were straight until after she  In 1986 she purchased a new Ford Aero Star van
and drove it until 1994.  She acquired 118,000 miles on it. Her fingers were straight until
she started driving the van.
I do know she suffered hand function restrictions because of the bending and twisting of
her fingers from the HES shock loads.  The centerline of her fingernail is not in line with
the knuckle because the tendons, muscle, and flesh have shifted.
This is a picture of a 57 year-old Quality Engineer.  
He didn't perform physical work.  This outward
bending of his thumb is from grasping the wheel on
his 2000 Impala.
He minimal physical use with his thumbs.
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This young lady in her 30's drives a van for a Children's Day Care Center

Aside from other deformities, her small finger bends away from the body
of her hand from driving with the steering wheel between the two.

Something we have always done, and it would be safe if it weren't for the
high effort steering on the van.
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This is a picture of a man in his 50's.  He was a school teacher - electronics.  Didn't do manual labor.  His
fingers are twisted and bent from driving over 180,000 miles on his Chevrolet Astro van.
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These are pictures of a young lady in her 50's that had straight fingers until she started driving her new
Pontiac-Sunbird.
The Sunbird has a 'high effort steering' system.  Some of her fingers are at a 45 degree angle to the cross axis
of her hands.  This will prove to be a very serious problem with her quality of life.  She will lose her thumb use
and gripping strength.
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This is a picture of a young 20 year-old girl that drove 100
miles a day back and fourth to college with her brand new
Chevrolet-Impala that she was so proud of.  
She didn't play video games.  She watched as her fingers
were bending and twisting, constantly asking her parents and
relatives.  A search was conducted in the family.  Their hadn't
been any problems with arthritis or deformities in the family
history.  
She was completely perplexed with the whole situation while
she watched helplessly as her fingers became bent and
twisted and she was losing her gripping strength. Never did
she (like many other people) direct one suspicious thought to
the stiff, high effort steering of her Impala.  
Who would believe dynamic forces were generated in the
Impala steering process?Her injuries are permanent and she
will suffer needlessly, because the design on the Impala, and
many other vehicles in the world-wide automotive industry,
didn't consider the human physical capabilities of the
customers.
Meet 22 year-old Clair.  Clair's fingers are deformed from their
bending and twisting to conform to the steering wheel on her
Mercury Cougar.
The Mercury-Cougar, like the Ford Mustang, and other vehicles
in the world-wide automotive industry, has a destructive 'high
effort steering' system.   
Drivers, large and small framed, can not avoid the negative
consequences of the dynamic forces involved with the steering.
This is another young girl who will suffer needlessly and
experience loss of gripping function and thumb use and be
challenged by simple physical tasks.
There are many more Clair's out there driving these physically
destructive 'high effort steering' vehicles.
Steering efforts have to be reduced to a value that is
acceptable to the human body.  Additionally, these dynamic
forces are responsible for our escalated
In summary:  I have driven many vehicles to try to find one which does not have a high effort steering system or a steering system that
does not have the damaging initial resistance to turning.  

I have driven Nissan, Saturn, Toyota, Chrysler, Mercedes, Mercury, Buick, Chevrolet, Dodge, Korean and many other cars and trucks.  
Nothing is without damage.  The lighter the steering the lower the effort and the longer it takes for physical damage to start appearing
as body pain or finger deformities.

Design changes in seating, and other factors as mentioned in my book need to be implemented by the world-wide automotive
industry because there are many factors in shock loading besides the steering.  The steering being the largest denominator.

The automotive industry, just as the video industries, computer and coloring, all provide forces that exceed the various customers
physical capabilities.

Children's Material Creep Force Tolerance levels are much lower and adults are higher, but industry provides these damaging forces
to all of us.

With this new knowledge, there is no longer any reason why people should suffer and arthritis.  We should be able to live arthritic free
from acceptance of this knowledge and implementation of design changes for the rest of humanities existence.

The information in this website is from our 5+ year study of children's deformed fingers from video gaming and adult health problems
from driving high effort steering systems.
Meet 54 year-old Lana.  She has
been driving "high effort steering"
(HES) vehicles since 1996 when her
fingers were straight.  The following
pictures show the HES permanent
damage.
Lana's fingers are bent and twisted to conform to the gripping surfaces of the
steering wheels of the HES vehicles she has been driving.  The arrows point
to the high side of the knuckle from the twisting that has occurred in her
fingers.  The bones between the knuckles also become twisted.
These injuries are permanent and are a result of the fast generation and
delivery of the forces required to overcome the resistance of the steering
wheel to move.  The move you drive..the worse it will become.  Each applied
force results in a mini trauma.  Each trauma, causes permanent mini
damage and it accumulative.
All fingers are deformed from bending and twisting.  The physical functionality
of her hands are now reduced.  She also suffers physical symptoms, as
previously mentioned.
A different view of
her left hand.  If
the fingers are not
held beside each
other, they will lie
on top or below
each other
because it is
typical of all
drivers of HES
vehicles.
Because of todays thick
steering wheel, most drivers
can only grasp the wheel with
the palm of their hands and
the tips of their fingers.  
Leaving both contact
surfaces to deliver the shock
loading forces to the steering
wheel, which additionally
results in the bending of the
ends of the fingers as shown
in this picture.
Lana is right handed.
Her right small finger
is so bent and
twisted that it will not
lay flat on a surface.  
The world-wide
automotive industry
failed to consider the
human physical
capabilities.
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Welcome to the silent, painless, mysterious world of the "High Effort Steering" vehicles and their
horribly damaging dynamic forces that have been attacking the skeletal and soft tissues of our
body, causing serious medical operations, physical movement restrictions, arthritic fingers and
body joints, the increased consumption of pain pills, emergency room visits, and skyrocketing
medical insurance costs.
_________________________________________________
________________________________________
www.miketomich.com
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If you have experienced these health problems contact your physician or refer them to the information on this site.  According to GM
the steering on my Impala cannot be reduced.  However, maybe your vehicle will allow an adjustment to a lower non-damaging
steering effort.  

If you cannot obtain corrective action from your vehicle manufacturer then contact:
Your senator through the U.S. Congress switchboard (Toll Free) 1-800-828-0498, asking by name or state.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in Washington, D.C.   1-888-327-4236
View NBC, TV-25 news
coverage of three
children with bent and
twisted fingers from
dynamic forces
generated in video
gaming
Flint,  Michigan, USA
(2:11min)
Also see the pictures located at:   Inside Our Book
+  Today...every foreign and domestic vehicle we've tested has musculoskeletal damaging
"high         effort steering." If you can not turn the steering wheel of your vehicle "effortlessly"
with one           small finger...then you will develop serious chronic physical injuries and pain
immediately                starting with serious permanent bending and twisting of fingers and
knuckles. Noticeable                physical finger and knuckle deformities will appear within 6,000
miles.
+ To avoid the injuries...contact your vehicle manufacturer and have the steering effort
reduced        to prevent dynamic force shock loading injuries.
and the Saturn, Nissan, Honda, Toyota, BMW. Mercedes, Dodge, Chrysler, Trucks,
Cadillac, Buick, SUV's, and most vehicles in the world-wide automotive industry.
This page shows the deformities I have developed from my 2000 Chevrolet Impal
Click picture See
informative Case
Studies
(flickr.com)
Click on camera: If your children have deformities like this from gaming, they will have
great difficulty performing physical tasks...who will hire them? The Video Gaming
Industry ??? You must call your senator today.
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