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Seat belt safety tips: Don't forget to follow these

There are a variety of safety steps you must take before hitting the road, with putting on your seat belt among the most important. If you neglect to do this, there's a much greater chance of serious injury in the event of an accident.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the national seat belt use rate in 2018 was 89.6%. As a result of such a high number, the agency estimates that seat belt use in passenger vehicles saved approximately 15,000 lives.

While it sounds easy enough to put on your seat belt and take off, there are some tips you need to keep in mind:

  • It only works if you put it on: For example, even if you're traveling a short distance, such as from your driveway to the end of the road, you should always wear a seat belt. You never know when an accident could occur.
  • Air bags and seat belts work together: Air bags are not designed to replace seat belts, but to instead work with them side by side. Without a seat belt holding you in place, the force of the air bag has greater potential to cause serious injury or death.
  • Proper use is a must: There is only one way to wear a seat belt. The right way. The lap belt should go across your pelvis, with the shoulder belt across your rib cage. Never place the shoulder belt behind your arm or back.
  • Check for proper fit: Don't assume that a seat belt will fit you properly. For example, if you need an adjustment, contact the dealer or manufacturer to learn more about your options. And if you drive an older vehicle that doesn't have both a lap and shoulder belt, you'll want to learn more about customizing it to meet modern safety requirements.

While the use of a seat belt can help keep you safe in the event of an accident, it's no guarantee. You could still suffer a serious injury, such as a traumatic brain injury, spinal cord damage or broken bones.

As you learn more about your injuries, prognosis and recovery period, contact your insurance company and learn more about your legal rights in Arizona to make a personal injury claim.

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Ortega Law Firm | 361 East Coronado Road, Suite 101, | Phoenix, AZ 85004-1525 | Phone: 480-582-0981 | Map & Directions