Accident statistics tend to bear out the idea that a seat belt increases a person’s safety in the car. In fact, some studies, including those from top American universities, show that up to 50% of accident victims could have avoided the full extent of injuries by wearing a seat belt.
The seat belt acts as a proper support for securing a body in a seat. That means that in sudden braking situations, or even a shock from the side, the body will stay inside the vehicle, instead of lurching forward or sideways toward the auto glass. As shock absorbing anchors, seat belts prevent all kinds of injuries related to contacting a window or auto body frame.
As states found that seat belts were extremely effective in saving lives, preventing injuries and lowering auto insurance claims, they wrote this kind of accident protection into law. It has since become mandatory for both children and adults in many states, and those who don’t buckle up risk a specific seat belt citation. Lawmakers are even considering making seat belts or harnesses mandatory for traveling pets as well.
Recent focus on the mandatory use of seat belts has led to some debate over exactly why and how seat belt laws are implemented in each state of the U.S. However, many state law enforcement and public safety officials see the use of seat belts as a common safety standard, and drivers should be aware that they may pay a hefty price in their state for failing to buckle up.