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Seat belt use is a major factor in the outcome of a crash

When you're in your vehicle, you probably know that it's a good idea to wear your seat belt. Do you know why, though? People are taught that seat belts are safer to use because there is a scientific reason for doing so. Basic physics prove that disbursing energy across the stronger parts of the body, like the pelvis and shoulders, helps prevent injuries in a crash. Additionally, the seat belt holds you back in a crash, preventing you from being thrown from the vehicle.

In 2016, 23,714 motor vehicle occupants lost their lives in crashes. Approximately half of those people were not wearing their seat belts at the time of their crashes. That doesn't necessarily mean that wearing a seat belt would have prevented their deaths, but there is a greater chance that they would have survived if they'd been wearing them.

Nationally, approximately 90.7% of people wear seat belts. It's believed that 14,955 people survived motor vehicle collisions as a result of seat belt use in 2017 as well.

Why is seat belt use so important for drivers and other occupants of the vehicle?

There are three main reasons why seat belt use is so important. These include:

  • Being restrained and secured inside your vehicle during a crash instead of facing ejection
  • Protecting you against the air bags, which could kill you if a seat belt does not hold you back
  • Correct seat belt use helps prevent injuries throughout the body

If you use a seat belt when you ride in the front seat of a passenger vehicle, you can reduce your risk of a moderate or critical injury by around half. You also reduce your likelihood of dying in a crash by around 45%.

If you are in a light truck and put on your seat belt, you'll reduce your risk of dying in a crash by 60% and your risk of moderate-to-critical injuries by around 65%.

As you can see from these statistics, seat belt use is important to stay safe in your vehicle if you have to stop suddenly or are involved in a collision. Putting on a seat belt is a simple step that everyone should take the moment they get into their vehicles. Take the time to adjust your seat belt to fit across your hips and shoulder, so that you have the most protection against the forces that are present when you get into a crash.

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