Seat belts can prevent car accident fatalities, serious injuries
Car accidents can be very dangerous and have caused many fatalities in North Carolina last year. While some injuries and fatalities may have been difficult to prevent, many injuries and fatalities caused by car accidents can be prevented by seat belts.
In North Carolina, many deaths caused by car accidents could have been prevented if drivers and passengers had worn their seat belts. The State Highway Patrol and public safety advocates say that seat belts are the best way to prevent serious and fatal injuries while driving. Despite the safety benefits of wearing a seat belt, many drivers and passengers still don’t, putting them at a higher risk for being killed or seriously injured in a car accident.
The State Highway Patrol said that many people believe that airbags will protect them in the event of a crash so they don’t need to also wear their seat belt. However, this isn’t true. The State Highway Patrol said that airbags are supposed to be used with seat belts to offer the best protection during a car accident so it is still very important for all drivers and passengers to wear their seat belts.
While seat belt use has increased during the last two decades, this is mainly because of state laws requiring drivers and passengers to always wear their seat belts. Seat belt use increased from 86 percent to almost 90 percent in 2011, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. This is good news but safety groups like the AAA say that awareness campaigns need to continue until everyone is wearing their seat belt.
The AAA has continued to voice their support for seat belt use, stating that they are the most effective way to prevent deaths and serious injuries. The AAA reported that seat belts have saved over 250,000 lives since 1975.
Source: High Point Enterprise, “Fatal accidents highlight need for seat belt use,” Paul Johnson, March 3, 2013