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January 11, 2019 in Tips
The saying and belief that seat belts save lives is true. Each year around 33,000 people are killed in car crashes and seat belts still represent the single most effective means of reducing the risk of death in a car crash.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, around 300,000 lives have been saved since 1975 in the U.S as a result of seat belts. The importance of seat belts as a life saving device is hard to overstate, but seat belt use is still not always a part of a driver or passenger’s routine.
The annual Click It or Ticket national high-visibility enforcement campaign supports law enforcement’s efforts to increase seat belt use and prevent crash fatalities. Mandatory seat belt laws are in effect in 49 states, Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Territories.
NHTSA data shows there were 10,428 unbuckled passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes in the United States in 2016 alone. If all passenger vehicle occupants 5 and older involved in fatal crashes had worn their seat belts, an additional 2,456 lives could have been saved.
Here are a few statistics you should know and share!
Seat Belt Safety
Always wear a seat belt and insist that passengers do the same. This is the first and most obvious rule. A seat belt is no good if it isn’t used. An unrestrained passenger can injure others in the vehicle during a crash, so make sure that everyone travelling in your vehicle is buckled before driving.
Believe it or not, there are right and wrong ways to wear a seat belt. By wearing a seat belt properly, it will better absorb fatal forces of a crash and be less likely to cause harm to vital internal organs. Be aware of the proper way to wear a seat belt.
Ensure proper position of the seat belt. Force has to be distributed evenly across the body when wearing a seat belt lap and shoulder belts alone can’t prevent your body from being thrust forward or ejected from the vehicle. Make sure both the lap belt and the shoulder belt are properly adjusted and fitted snugly against your body. If the belt is too loose, you could be thrown against the belt itself. Never slip the shoulder belt behind your body.
Have faulty belts repaired. If the seat belt or belts do not operate properly or cannot be adjusted, you should take the car in and have the belt mechanism repaired or replaced. If the car model is only fitted with lap belts, have the seat belts upgraded to the standard three-point harness belts found in all modern vehicles.
Adjust the head restraints. Seat belts are effective for preventing your body from being thrust forward into the dashboard or ejected from the car, but many injuries in car crashes are head and neck injuries that could be prevented by properly adjusting the head restraints on the seat. Adjust the head restraint so that the top of the restraint is as high as the top of your head to create an even distribution of force. Always do this before driving and make sure to fasten the seat belt after.
Be sure to check National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for upcoming 2018 statistics!
For helpful advice or to learn more about our services, contact A.U.T.O. Collision at 801.568.0305 or visit the shop at 215 West 9210 South, Sandy, Utah 84070. We are here to serve you Monday – Friday, 8am – 5:30pm.
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