A safety belt (more commonly referred to as a seat belt), according to the FMCSA, is a “harness designed to secure occupants inside the vehicle.” Without a doubt, seat belts are the most important in-cab safety feature that will protect occupants in the event of a sudden stop or crash.
Seat belts must also be worn by CMV drivers, even though some drivers may have excuses for not buckling up. The most common excuse is that “it’s uncomfortable,” but the data is clear that wearing your seat belt can save your life. The Large Truck Crash Causation Study reported that 23% of combination truck, single-vehicle crashes involved the driver not wearing their seat belt. Stay with us for this edition of “Top Tips for Drivers” for some tips and benefits of wearing your safety belt.
Always means always.
It’s important to always wear your seatbelt while driving, whether it’s a short distance or a long trip. It’s also critical for any passengers, to buckle up as well. In the event of a sudden stop or crash, seat belts will keep you secured to the seat. This helps prevent injuries or even death that could occur from you being thrown from the seat into the steering wheel, dashboard, or windshield. Don’t forget: buckling up is the law, and violations are subject to monetary fines.
Seat belts prevent being ejected in the event of a crash.
A lot of people think that it’s better to be thrown clear of the wreckage if they’re involved in a crash, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Did you know that an occupant is actually four times as likely to be fatally injured when thrown from the vehicle?
You’re never too good of a driver for a seat belt.
In fact, the best drivers buckle up whether they think they’ll be in an accident or not. It’s great to be confident in your driving abilities, but don’t be overly confident in all of those drivers around you, too. Just because you don’t think you’ll cause an accident doesn’t mean you won’t be involved in one that isn’t your fault.
Don’t let excuses for not wearing a seat belt get the best of you. Always use your best judgement, common sense, and training in addition to these tips. Check out our other blog posts to find more useful tips and tricks for truckers!