Why You Should Always Wear a Seatbelt

A seatbelt is your number one defense against negligent drivers, including drunk drivers, distracted drivers, and aggressive drivers. No matter how short your journey is, you should always buckle up. Here’s why:

Seatbelts Save Lives

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), seatbelt use saves an estimated 14,955 lives per year. In 2017 alone, buckling up “could have saved an additional 2,549 people if they had been wearing seat belts.”

Not only can seatbelts keep you from being ejected from your vehicle, but they can also keep you still within the car and help prevent injury. Contrary to popular myths, seatbelts do not interfere with airbags or other life-saving devices in your vehicle. Rather, seatbelts, airbags, and all other safety features work together to keep you safe.

Wearing a seatbelt reduces your risk of fatal injury by 45% and your risk of moderate to critical injury by 50%.

There’s No Such Thing as a Safe Trip

Some people choose not to buckle up before a short trip or when traveling at low speeds. Unfortunately, seemingly “safe” trips can be some of the most dangerous. Most fatal crashes happen within 25 miles of the home and at speeds under 40 mph.

You never know when a drunk driver may come speeding down the road or someone will turn directly into your path while trying to send a text.

Putting on your seatbelt helps you expect the unexpected and keep yourself as safe as possible.

How to Buckle Up Safely

Secure your lap belt and shoulder belt across your pelvis and rib cage. These are the strongest parts of your body, and seatbelts help ensure they are the areas that sustain the most impact during a crash. Keep the shoulder belt away from your neck, and if the seatbelt does not fit, consider seatbelt adjusters, or ask your car dealer about seatbelt extenders. If you are pregnant, place the lap belt below your belly. Keep children in car seats and booster seats until they are old enough to buckle up.

If you drive an older car with lap belts only, consider retrofitting it with safer, more modern seatbelts.

What If Something Goes Wrong?

During car accidents and truck accidents, nothing can eliminate the risk of serious injury or death – not even seatbelts. If someone causes a car accident, and you get hurt as a result, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation for your medical bills, missed wages, and other losses.

Busch, Reed, Jones & Leeper, P.C. can help you file a claim, compile evidence, deal with insurance companies, and more. We have more than 150 years of combined legal experience, and we know how to protect your interests.

Call us at (770) 629-0154 to learn more about your rights and legal options or contact us online for a consultation.