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Teens and Seat Belt Use

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fort collins car accident lawyerMemorial Day is traditionally known as the official summer kickoff. It is also in the middle of the annual Click It or Ticket campaign sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). It has been well documented for decades that seat belts save lives in the event of a vehicle accident. While at one time, wearing a seat belt was up to the individual, today, every state has some form of seat belt law in place.

In Colorado, all front-seat occupants must wear a seat belt. Passengers 15 years or younger must be secured with an appropriate safety restraint system no matter where they are sitting in the vehicle. Yet, despite the overwhelming evidence they save lives and the fact that it is the law, there are still many people who refuse to buckle up.

Seat Belt Usage

According to national statistics, at least 27 million people admit to not wearing a seat belt. In 2019, almost 18,000 fatal car crash victims were not wearing seat belts at the time of the crash. It is estimated that over 15,000 lives are saved because of the use of seat belts.

Teens, especially, have the lowest seat belt use rate, whether they are driving or a passenger. In one major survey, more than 40 percent of teens admitted to not using seat belts. Not wearing seat belts puts teens at a much higher risk of being killed or suffering serious injuries in a car accident. The risk of death or multiple injuries is twice as high for teens not wearing seat belts compared to those who do.

Spinal Fractures

One common – and serious – injury many teens suffer in crashes is spinal fractures. A recent study has found an alarming correlation between spinal fractures and lack of seat belts. According to the study’s findings, which used data from over 34,000 pediatric spinal fracture cases, more than 60 percent of these fractures suffered happened to teens between the ages of 15 to 17. The majority of these fractures occurred in vehicle accidents, and at least two-thirds of those victims were not wearing seat belts.

Contact a Larimer County Car Accident Attorney

Getting a driver’s license is a life milestone for many teens. It is also often another reason to add to the list of parental worries. Making sure your teen buckles up every time they get into a vehicle can help ensure their safety and your peace of mind.

Unfortunately, no matter how safe of a driver your teen is, there are other drivers on the road who display negligence and recklessness. If your teen has been injured in an accident caused by another driver, having a skilled Fort Collins car accident attorney advocating for your family with the other driver’s insurance company can be key to getting the financial compensation you deserve. Call Hoggatt Law Office, P.C. today at 970-225-2190 to schedule a free consultation.

 Sources:

https://www.usnews.com/news/health-news/articles/2021-05-20/biggest-reason-teens-injure-their-spines-not-wearing-seat-belts

https://www.nhtsa.gov/campaign/click-it-or-ticket

 

https://leg.colorado.gov/content/seat-belt-law

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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

970-225-2190 | 1-800-664-3151

123 North College Avenue, Suite 160,
Fort Collins, CO 80524

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