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    Be Smart and Buckle Up—Here’s Why

    Lu Weil, Injury Prevention Coordinator Injury Prevention Coordinator, Deaconess Regional Trauma Center 07/22/2016

    Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among those aged 1-54. For adults and older children (who are big enough for seat belts to fit properly), seat belt use is the most effective way to save lives and reduce injuries in crashes.

    Yet, millions of people do not buckle up on every trip.

    • But I’m just going to run to the grocery store.
    • I have an air bag, so I don’t need to buckle up.
    • It’s uncomfortable.
    • I’m in the backseat, so I don’t need to wear a seat belt.

    These are just a few of the excuses we hear as to why people don’t wear their seat belts. The reality is, seat belts reduce serious crash-related injuries and death by about half. Air bags provide added protection but are not a substitute for seat belts. Air bags plus seat belts provide the greatest protection for adults.

    So what can YOU do to help make a difference?•Use a seat belt on every trip, no matter how short. This sets a good example.

    • Make sure children are properly buckled up in restraint device appropriate for their age and size.
    • Don’t allow children 12 years and younger to ride in the front seat. Ever.
    • Require everyone in the car to buckle up, including those in the back seat.

    Don’t become another statistic. Buckle up. Every. Time.

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