Seat belts are one of the most valuable and integral safety devices in a car. Often, they can mean the difference between life and fatal injury in a car accident. In fact, they are credited with saving nearly 14,000 lives per year. However, there are some unexpected hazards which can potentially result from seat belts in a car accident. Such hazards generally stem from the fact that most if not all seat belts are made in a one-size fits all style, which can cause issues with certain individuals.
An Unexpected Hazard
The potential dangers of a one-size fits all seat belt tend to come into play in car accidents involving smaller, more elderly individuals. In one particular instance, a seat belt did not adequately protect a 60-year-old 5-foot-4 woman. She ended up in a neck brace with a concussion and back injuries. Generally, the one-size fits all seat belt frequently ends up being too strong for older individuals, causing further injuries in car accidents.
Suggested Improvements for Making Seatbelts Safer
Crash tests are being conducted in order to ensure the exact amount of force seat belts need to exert in order to hold back people of all body types. Particular concern is being directed toward those with more fragile frames, such as elderly individuals. The goal of these tests is to develop a seat belt that automatically adjusts to the body type of the individual wearing it. That will help to reduce the neck and chest injuries caused by seat belts in car accidents.
For the time being, drivers and passengers can take steps to ensure their own safety. Seat belt users should make sure that the belt rests on the shoulder, rather than the neck or ribs. Additionally, leaving 10 to 12 inches between the user and the airbag is recommended.
Cherry Hill Car Accident Lawyers at Folkman Law Offices, P.C. Represent Victims of Car Accidents in South Jersey
Car accidents can happen to anyone, at any time. If you or someone you know has been the victim of a car accident in South Jersey, then the Cherry Hill car accident lawyers at Folkman Law Offices, P.C. ready to help. Call us at 856-354-9444 or contact us online today. With offices in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, Philadelphia, and King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, we represent victims of car accidents in Cherry Hill and throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania.