Seat belts reduce the risk of being killed or seriously injured in an accident by half. Buckling up could save your life!
In Québec, more than 90% of people wear their seat belts.
Despite this fact, each year approximately 30% of drivers and passengers killed in traffic accidents involving passenger vehicles were not buckled in.
In accidents involving one or more heavy vehicles, only 38% of deceased heavy vehicle drivers or passengers were wearing a seat belt.
On average, each year:
If everyone riding in a vehicle were to wear a seat belt, 30 deaths and 75 serious injuries could be avoided every year.
A seat belt reduces by half the risk of being killed or seriously injured in an accident. The higher the speed, the greater the impact:
That's starting to get pretty high!
When an automobile strikes an obstacle at 50 km/h, the impact multiplies the weight of a person or an object by at least 20. In other words, an individual who weighs 70 kg becomes a 1,400 kg projectile!
If you are not wearing a seat belt and an accident happens, you will be thrown against the first thing in your path (front seat, dashboard, windshield, another passenger) depending on where you are in the vehicle. You may also be thrown from the vehicle. Imagine the consequences!
Some people think that if they are driving slowly or for only a short distance there is no danger. That's simply not true!
Many accidents happen near home and more than half of all accidents occur in zones of 50 km/h or less.
Headrests provide additional protection
In rear-end or head-on collisions, a properly adjusted headrest reduces the risk of whiplash by over 25%.
To be properly protected:
It is very likely that your knees will be the first thing to touch the seat in front of you, which may cause your body to twist sharply and could lead to a broken spinal cord, among other things.
Relationship between blood alcohol concentration and seat belt use
Statistics show that among drivers and passengers killed in a traffic accident, the higher their blood alcohol concentration, the less likely they were to have been wearing a seat belt (data from the SAAQ and the coroner’s office).
Designated drivers have a role to play! Remind your passengers that buckling up is important. This is for the sake of everyone’s safety.
Last update: February 16, 2022