It’s important to wear a seat belt when you’re in your vehicle. Failing to do so means that you’ll be thrown forward in an auto collision, and that could mean that you hit your head on the windshield.
While you’ll likely stay in the vehicle, that impact to your skull could be significant, especially at higher speeds. When your head hits a windshield, the brain injury is nearly simultaneous with the impact, which means that you need to get medical attention as soon as possible.
Proper seat belt use prevents brain injuries
In the case of either rear-end or front-end collisions, there is a risk that you could be thrown forward and hit your head or other body parts on your windshield. This is why proper seat belt use is so important in the case of a crash. Seat belts are designed to hold your body back, so that you don’t hit the windshield or end up going through it.
Seat belts also reduce the force of a collision against your body. The belts themselves redistribute the force of the collision across the pelvis and shoulders, as well as other, stronger areas of the body.
Seat belts stretch. If you’ve noticed, even when they pull tight against the body, they do have some stretch despite the tension. This is for a good reason. The seat belt’s stretch reduces the average force of the impact on your body as it works to spread that force out across a greater area.
With no seat belt, a person will continue to travel at the same speed at which their vehicle was moving until they meet an opposing force. This may be the steering column, an air bag or the windshield. If the windshield breaks, they may be thrown from the vehicle.
Seat belts hold you back in your seat, which actually increases your stopping distance along with your vehicle. Without the seat belt, you do not slow down at all until you have a sudden stop by hitting an opposing force. The impact in that scenario is much higher if you hit an object without first being slowed by a seat belt.
All this is to say that to be safe, good seat belt use is essential. You’ll prevent a high-speed collision with a windshield, which can help you prevent a serious or fatal brain injury.