Seat-belt use by Americans has bumped up another point, to 85 percent in 2010. Research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration ("NHTSA") estimated that if everyone had used seat belts last year, 3,688 deaths could have been avoided, according to a report in The Washington Post. It seems like a "no brainer" to everyone at Abrams Landau, however, we still see many drivers not wearing their safety belts. What is more, the Landau Law Shop still get calls from badly injured car crash victims who were not wearing their lap or shoulder restraints. Air bags and larger cars are insufficient alone to prevent permanent injury, disability and death in a high speed motor vehicle crash. The NHTSA estimated that seat-belt use, which has increased steadily since 1994, saved 12,713 lives in 2009.
The report, produced through statistical analysis of accident data, included estimates that seat belts saved four lives in the District of Columbia last year, 237 in Maryland and 263 in Virginia. It projected that 30 lives in Maryland and 115 in Virginia might have been saved by 100 percent compliance with seat-belt requirements. What if cars did not start unless the driver was properly buckled ? How many lives would be saved ?