Seatbelts are simple yet very effective safety devices found in every modern vehicle. They are standard because they work to save lives in accidents. However, if you do not wear one properly, it may not be as effective and could harm you in a crash. This is why children must sit in booster seats once they are too big for a safety seat. The booster puts them in the correct position to wear the seat belt properly.
Many people do not know the correct way to wear a seatbelt. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, properly using your seat belt in a car can reduce your risk of dying in an accident by 45%. In a pickup truck, it helps even more, reducing your risk by 60%.
Not every seatbelt is equal. You should always check the seatbelts in a vehicle before you buy it. You may need a seatbelt adjuster to be able to properly put on the safety mechanism. Extenders are also an option if the belt is too tight.
The proper fit of a seatbelt is where the shoulder strap lies across your chest and does not touch your neck. It should lie over your ribcage, which is a strong point on your body and can handle the pressure of the belt should you have an accident.
The lap belt needs to lie across your hips. It is important to not let the belt lie on your stomach. It needs to run parallel with the seat across your hips, which is another strong point of your body.