When seatbelts were first required, it was actually somewhat controversial. We take them for granted today, but people didn’t like being told that they had to wear them and didn’t actually think that the seatbelts would help.
In today’s world, you may assume that most people would have accepted seatbelts without a problem, but some reports claim that up to 65% of people didn’t want to have a legal mandate that you had to wear a seatbelt. They pushed back against this because they felt it was unfair.
But do seat belts actually help? Are they actually going to be beneficial if you follow the law and wear them?
They reduce fatalities
While there have been other advances on the road since the 1960s and 1970s, a quick look at the fatalities each year shows that they have certainly dropped since that time. The seatbelt is credited with much of that decline. It does not prevent accidents, and it certainly doesn’t prevent all injuries. But the evidence does show that a seatbelt makes it less likely that an accident will be fatal.
Moreover, a seatbelt could help reduce the severity of an injury that is suffered. For instance, a person without a seatbelt could strike their head and wind up with a traumatic brain injury that changes the rest of their life. Someone with the seatbelt on may still get injured in the accident, but it could be more soft tissue issues than serious injuries.
All that being said, it’s also clear that seatbelts do not prevent all fatalities, nor do they prevent all serious injuries. If another driver causes an accident, even if you’ve taken all the safety precautions that you can, this could still happen to you. Make sure you know how to seek financial compensation if it does.