Encyclopedia > Seat belt

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Seat belt

A seat belt is a harness designed to hold a passenger of an automobile or other vehicle in place if an accident occurs. Seat belts therefore significantly reduce injuries by more gradually slowing the wearer down and reducing the likelihood of a collision with hard interior elements of the car, being thrown from the vehicle, and the possibility of rear seat passengers crashing into others in the vehicle.

Compulsory Seat Belt Laws

Its use is mandatory in many countries, amongst other justifications pointing to studies showing that a disproportionate number of road deaths are amongst people not wearing them. There are objections advanced about the possibility that the use of a seat belt can more easily cause neck injuries (being the head free to move inertially while the rest of the body is blocked), and about the risk of imprisoning the passenger inside the vehicle, especially dangerous in case of fire. Seat belt proponents argue that that very few fatal vehicle accidents involve fire.

Other objections against the obligation to use it regard the individual free will.

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