Get Your Seatbelt Together

29 September 2015

Choosing to wear a seatbelt can be difference between life and death – for you and your passengers.

The Motor Accident Commission’s new strong and simple seatbelt message will roll out across its network of 51 regional billboards from Monday.

Seatbelts are one of the primary safety features included in vehicles and when worn correctly, substantially reduce the risk of serious injury or death in a crash.

Wearing a seat belt is one of the simplest and most effective ways of protecting yourself if you are travelling in a vehicle. Unfortunately in 2014, about 25 per cent of all vehicle occupants killed in road crashes were not wearing one.

Research tells us that people use an array of excuses when they do not wear their seatbelts like complacency, discomfort and a perceived unlikelihood of having a crash. The reality is that there is simply no excuse.

Wearing a seatbelt doubles your chances of surviving a serious crash, yet despite the benefits shown by road safety research, time and time again too many people do not take the time to ‘buckle up’.

MAC General Manger of Road Safety Michael Cornish said regional road users are especially overrepresented in trauma statistics.

"Between 2010 and 2014, 40 per cent of people who died and 8 per cent of people who were seriously injured in rural areas were not wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash," Mr Cornish said.

"This compares with 26 per cent for fatal and 7 per cent of serious injury crashes in metropolitan areas over the same period.

"Seatbelts protect everyone in the car. In a crash without a seatbelt, the human body is subject to much greater force, resulting in far more serious injuries or death.

"Anyone unrestrained can become a human missile even at relatively low speeds.

"Seatbelts save lives - that is why we all must wear one. If you don’t it could cost you $401 - or worse!"

Wearing a seatbelt became compulsory in South Australia in 1971.

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