- Car Safety & Safe Driving
Not Wearing a Seatbelt?
First of all, I want to say, that I ALWAYS WEAR A SEAT BELT. But I come from a country where many people don't. So here are the most common excuses they have. Hopefully they are not the case in the U.S. or any other developed country, but if you know someone who doesn't want to wear a seat belt, pass this hub to him or her.
Reason 1: It's not cool
Yes, I put this reason first, because for some people, the image is everything. So, why isn't it cool? Is it a way to show that you are a great driver who would never need to do an emergency brake? Or never hit the back of a standing truck while driving on ice? Well, even if you are the greatest driver in the world, the drivers around you are not. Let's say you will never hit another car, but what if another car hits you? And that driver would be to blame... but you will be dead. Or perhaps you want to show that you are not afraid of anything and can do everything on a road? I guess, there are a lot of brave people among those who work in construction, but none of them would walk without a helmet in a construction zone.
Reason 2: The seat belt is uncomfortable
Have you tried it actually? And have you tried to wear sunglasses? Were they comfortable the first hour you wore them? With the seat belt it's the same. In some time, it will become like a part of your clothing. Make an experiment, find some winding road and drive on it at first without the seat belt, and then buckled up. You'll see how much better is taking turns while being fastened, since you are not wobbling in a car.
Reason 3: If you hit a tree at a speed of 90 miles/hour, the seat belt won't help
Well, this statement is correct. But if you plan to drive at this speed somewhere where there is a risk to hit a tree, then something is wrong with you already. I am considering the actions of normal people who were unlucky to get into an accident because of the road conditions or the fault of others, or who get into the ditch to avoid the head-on collision. So let's stop here and discuss the technical side in more detail.
Let's see what is a road accident. It is a usual collision with any object which means a sudden (very-very-very sudden and sharp) stop. Now let's recall something from the high school physics class. Do you remember what the power of inertia is? During the unstable bundle of two physical bodies at the time of a sudden stop of one of them, the second one continues to move by inertia. For example, if you are standing on a raft which floats to the shore, at the moment it hits the ground, you will inevitably fall.
When your car hits the wall at a speed of 25 miles/hour, you are influenced by the weight which is almost 4 times heavier than yours. That is, your ribs hit the steering wheel and are pressed from your back by the weight of about 615-705 lbs with an acceleration of about 4G. Try to lay on a floor and put six bags of cement on your stomach. For the experiment to be more precise, do not put the bags, but throw them from a height of about 16 inches. I think the outcome of the experiment is clear.
Reason 4: I have an airbag, why do I need a seat belt?
In the moment of the head-on collision, the back of the car flies up (you can see it in any video of an accident or a crash test). The same thing happens to your body. So the back of the car goes up and so do you (remember inertia?). Besides, you also go forward (there is no seat belt to keep you back), as we mentioned already even at 25 miles/hour that can be fatal. And now (oh luck!) the airbag opens. But it's not a luck really, because it opens with a speed of 215-250 miles/hour and because the driver's body is floating in the air, he gets a stroke by the airbag to the bottom of his ribs and a stomach. And ads a blunt abdominal trauma to the broken ribs and crashed head.
So if you want that the biggest problem after your collision was the car repair, replacing the light and writing a hub about your experience, remember to always buckle up!