According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, seat belts reduce serious car crash-related injuries and deaths by about 50%. Wearing a seat belt is easy, simple, and it’s the most effective way to reduce the risk of fatality in a car crash!
Despite that, millions of people still don’t use seat belts. These objections seem to center on the five most common seat belt myths. To try and promote the importance of seatbelt use, here’s a thorough debunking of each of them:
Seat belts are restrictive and uncomfortable
Seat belts have come a long way since becoming a mandatory car feature in the 1960s. Polyester webbing and pre-tensioners eliminate seat belt slack in the event of a crash and make seat belts more comfortable for the passenger. If you’re bothered by how your seat belt fits over your body, it’s a simple matter of purchasing extenders and clips at your local car dealership or auto parts store. Make sure the lap and shoulder belts sit across the appropriate parts of your body for good measure.
Proper placement of a seat belt is crucial to ensure maximum protection. Children should fit the lap belt across their thighs, and pregnant women should never place the lap belt across their belly or the shoulder strap under their arms. If you’re not sure about what the best placement is for your condition, then it’s best to ask an expert for advice.
Seat belts will trap you inside your car after a crash
This is a myth perpetuated by action movies, where victims get stuck inside the car in the event of fire or water-related crashes. In reality, these accidents account for only 0.5% of all car crashes.
When these types of crashes do happen, the greatest danger is still with the impact preceding the fire or submersion in water. The best chance for survival depends on the victim remaining conscious and aware of their surroundings! If the victim is not wearing a seat belt, they will likely be knocked unconscious or severely injured. In fact, remaining belted through a crash leads to a much greater chance of rescue and survival.
Seat belts are only for long road trips
To most people, it makes sense to wear a seat belt only while roaring down the highway on a cross-country road trip. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, most traffic-related deaths occur within 25 miles of the victim’s home and at speeds below 40 mph.
Drivers take the most risks during routine trips to nearby establishments a few blocks away. Many things can go wrong even on short rides, and they can be made worse by adding the carelessness of not wearing a seat belt.
Seat belts are not worth the extra time to put them on
If you check your rearview mirror, fuel levels, and lock your door before you start driving, then you can make time to put on your seat belt; in fact, it takes less than two seconds to do so. If it doesn’t fit properly, take the time to adjust it so you won’t have to worry about it for next time.
If you buckle your seatbelt ten times in one day, that’s less than 30 minutes of your time. It’s a mere blip compared to the days or weeks you’ll have to spend in the hospital if you get into a crash.
Seat belts superfluous because I have airbags
Airbags and seat belts serve different functions in partnership with each other. Seat belts are the first line of defense, while airbags provide supplementary protection.
Airbags are designed to protect a passenger that’s securely buckled into their seat. Seat belts make sure passengers are in the proper position to benefit from airbag deployment. If only one is left to work, there’s a high likelihood that their safety providing features will be sorely diminished.
No seat belt myths can hold water against the amount of protection they provide to billions of passengers worldwide. Ensure your family’s safety by routinely checking your seat belts and airbags! By approaching a professional near you, you can secure your vehicle for any possible accident that may occur on the road.
If you need seat belt repair or replacement in Westfield, MA, Safety Restore is here for you. We’re the leader in post-accident restorations, providing repair services for faulty seat belts and uncomfortable webbing. Contact us today to find out how we can help you!