Costs: Lives and Dollars
Nationally, 51 percent of the 22,187 passenger vehicle occupants who were killed in motor vehicle crashes were NOT wearing seat belts at the time of their fatal crashes.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), seat belts saved more than 12,500 lives nationwide.
With proper seat belt use, research shows that the risk of fatal injury to front seat passenger car occupants is reduced by 45 percent, and the risk of moderate to serious injury is reduced by 50 percent.
Buckling Up is the single most effective thing you can do to protect yourself in a crash.
Vehicle occupants who did NOT USE SEAT BELTS or CHILD SAFETY SEATS were:
- Almost four times more likely to require hospitalization.
- Resulted in average hospital charges over $20,000 higher than those who buckled up.
- Almost three times more likely to be diagnosed with a Traumatic Brain Injury
- More than twice as likely to be diagnosed with a serious injury.
A public health issue
Traffic crashes are the:
- Leading cause of death for people ages 5-34
- Leading cause of on-the-job fatalities
- Fifth leading cause of death for all Americans.