A seat belt is mandatory to wear a seat belt when riding a car, unless in a state where it is not mandatory. But despite the risks, many people are still reluctant to use a seat belt while driving. In 2021, the national use rate increased at 90.4 percent as more and more Americans understand the true and life-saving value of wearing seat belts.
Seat belts are designed to prevent the occupant from being thrown from the vehicle during collision. In fact, they lower the risk of front seat passenger deaths by as much as 45%. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), seat belts have saved an estimated number of 374,276 lives just from 1975 through 2017.
So what are the important benefits of wearing a seat belt?
1. Prevent You and Your Passenger to Be Thrown Out
This is the most important benefit of wearing a seat belt. A seatbelt will prevent you and your passenger from being thrown out of the car during a collision. This is because the forces acting on the occupant are spread over the strongest parts of the body. For example, the chest and pelvis are the strongest parts of the body. Thus the forces acting on these parts are spread out over these parts, preventing the occupant from being thrown out of the car.
2. Minimize the Injuries
An unrestrained occupant will be weak and limp, and will be more vulnerable to the violent forces acting on the body in a collision. Hence the force of impact on the occupant will be magnified many times more.
In the event of a crash, the seat belt helps prevent the passenger from sliding under the steering wheel and reduces the risk of soft tissue injuries, such as cuts and bruises on a passenger's head, neck, shoulders and collarbone. Seat belts distribute the force of the impact on the strong parts of the body, thus reducing the risk of fatal injuries.
3. Save Emergency Medical Costs
The cost of emergency medical services is much higher than the cost of a seat belt. This is because an unrestrained occupant is likely to sustain serious injuries, and these injuries need immediate medical attention. Seat belts minimize the injury in the event of a collision. Hence the occupants are less likely to need immediate medical attention, thus reducing the cost of the emergency medical services.
4. Increase Your Comfort When Traveling
Wearing a seat belt is the best way to increase your comfort when traveling. The seat belt keeps the body in an upright position and reduces fatigue when traveling long distances.
Wearing a seat belt is as easy as buckling your shoe laces. This means that you don’t have to stop your activities to wear a seat belt. You can even eat, read and talk on your cell phone while driving.
5. Save You Money
For many drivers, the cost of using a seat belt is negligible compared to the cost of the injuries sustained during an accident. However, this cost is not constant. It varies with each state. As a result, the cost incurred by an occupant who sustained injuries during a collision is much higher than the cost of a seat belt.
Wearing a seat belt is not only your responsibility, but also the responsibility of every driver and passenger in your vehicle. Ignoring your responsibility to wear a seat belt will likely get you into an accident. And as it increases your risk of death or serious injury, it will cost you and your family a lot more than the cost of a seat belt.
Although some people may find it uncomfortable to wear a seat belt, many people consider it a necessary precaution to protect themselves during a collision. If you are among those who don’t wear seat belts, it is time you shop for a seat belt and put it into action. Wearing a seat belt will not only protect yourself, it will also reduce the cost of medical treatment incurred by the occupants who are injured during a collision.
Repair My SRS offers seat belt retractor repair service for all brands of seat belts. We have a solid experience in repairing seat belt retractors from various seat belt manufacturers. Let us help ensure that you and your passenger are safe in your vehicle. Contact us today to get started!