Monthly Archives: May 2013

Your Questions About For Those Drivers Who Were Not Wearing Safety Belts At The Time Of Their Deaths

May 26, 2013

Thomas asks…

Had a Car accident, what were the chances of dying?

On a very congested high way, my friend was driving at about 100mph and friends at the passenger seat and 3 including me at the back, Do understand we live in a country where there is no speed limit
or atleast not official, which dosent make it right but it was his car and we do say you drive too fast.

So there was 3 lanes and in the fastest lane a car suddenly hit the break we dont know why but he did to avoid it he tried to go through the car and the one next to it in the process going half way into a small truck which caused it to flip over and skid off and we eventually hit the car that breaked and that car lost control and hit the concrete guard rail and 2 other cars were severely broken

3 people were hospitalized 3 flipped over cars 3 others including ours damaged
but for some reason none of us in the car 5 people were even scratched.

the car was severely damaged from the front and sides but it was still running and the engine and radiator still working.
only the my friends in the front driving and passenger had seat belts
none of us at the back had seat belts on

and the air bags did not deploy which is another reason he some how steered it off the other speeding cars to safety off road

What do you think the odds of us surviving were?

admin answers:

You live in Australia … Correct?

Very few roads in Australia don’t have a speed limit, but if a Police Officer sees you driving excessively fast on these roads ~ you will still be fined …. Unless you can prove that the driver has sufficient experience to drive safely at that speed ~ the car was designed to “handle” at that speed and there were no other vehicles in the immediate vicinity.

Based on (1) what I know about your age ~ probably similar to the driver’s age, (2) the speed the car (in which you were a passenger) was traveling, (3) the fact that nobody in the rear seat was wearing a seatbelt and (4) a collision involving 6 cars actually occurred ~~~~~~~~~~ you’re damn lucky to be alive!!

5 young people in a motor car doing 100mph on a CONGESTED highway is a recipe for disaster and I’m glad that I wasn’t anywhere near you and your irresponsible friends. Your friends may not have caused the accident, but you sure as hell contributed to it’s severity!!

This time ~ you’ve managed to cheat “death”. Next time, you might not be so lucky.

Betty asks…

SUV or small car?

im looking for a car for my teenager.. do you suggest a small SUV or a small car?? for what reasons? know any good ones?

admin answers:

Previous answers are all nuts. Lets start by thinking like a grown-up about what is best for the teen…not what they might want. ALL Teen drivers Eventually run their vehicle to the handling and acceleration limits. At these limits accidents happen. In an SUV or small pickup the odds of Rolling over is very high. Most teens do not wear seat belts when not in sight of parents. This leads to them being ejected and crushed by their own vehicle. SO SUV and small pickup is OUT!!! Small car? Your teen will drive a tiny car very fast and most likely either hit another vehicle or be hit by another vehicle. The odds of a crippling injury or immediate death in an accident goes up exponentially the smaller the car.
What you want to buy is a Larger car that is slow and heavy. Hopefully you can find one that is so uncool that your teens friends wont want to ride with them. The more teens in the car, the more likely there is pressure to do stupid stuff behind the wheel, as well as multiple distractions leading to accidents. My suggestion? Look for a Midsize or larger inexpensive car. Something like a nice mid 90s Ford Crown Victoria sedan. The Crown Victoria is the Safest sedan on the road in America according to the National insurance Institute for Highway safety. Fuel mileage is surprisingly decent for a large vehicle like this. Expect about 20mpg. Insurance and liscencing will be CHEAP for a car like this. Also, since they are only popular with Police officers, Taxis and the Medicare crowd, the Value of these cars is next to nothing. You can buy a low miles one that is near mint for $2500 or less. At that price you wont care about all the door dings and the crunched fender it will get. Dont like Fords? Buick Park Avenue/ Le Sabre. Chevrolet Caprice up through ’96. Need newer GM? Chevrolet Impala? Good Luck!

Lizzie asks…

Why Aren’t Cars Safer?

My mom just got rear ended by some jackass who didn’t even stop after he hit her. Shes okay luckily, but it got me thinking. Why the hell aren’t cars safer? Why don’t they have all the same safety features as Nascar drivers do? Wouldn’t it make sense to install roll cages, head restraining units, 5 point seat harnesses, lexan windows, side nets, crush zones, conformed seats, etc? Most of these things are cheap and practical. Even though some are pricier (roll cages, lexan windows), who could possibly place money before safety? Imagine all the lives spared and injuries prevented. Why are we forced to drive death machines with nothing but 3 point belts and crappy air bags? Instead of pretty looking luxury cars, It makes 1000 times more sense to have ugly ones with race car standard safety. Isn’t it disturbing that something as simple as going to the grocery store can mean being fully paralyzed, disfigured, or killed?
rko88 you didn’t have to insult me. How old am I? Looks who talking, if you were more mature you’d realize my point instead of coming off as a douche. Driving more carefully won’t save you from the morons not paying attention. The point of my question was that cars lack safety features that can dramatically improve your chances of surviving a car crash. Many people die hitting the steering wheel during a collision. This could be prevented by a 5 point seat belt. These safety features are a better investment than beautiful looking cars.

admin answers:

So, you WANT to wear a helmet?

NASCAR drivers do.

Cars have more “safety features” added all the time.
My truck only has lap belts – none of the newer features.
Driving carefully DOES save you from the morons not paying attention. It’s how I’ve survived riding for more than 20 years. The same tactics work in a cage as they do on a ‘cycle. Watching your back is always important. Cagers just don’t seem to think so, relying on a bumper instead of themselves.
P.S. Glad your mom’s ok.

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Your Questions About For Those Drivers Who Were Not Wearing Safety Belts At The Time Of Their Deaths

May 25, 2013

Mark asks…

Good essay for the University of Oregon?

So this is the essay that I sent into the University of Oregon… Thoughts? Opinions?:

Last February, the tragic and totally preventable death of one of my closest friends caused me to found a S.A.D.D. chapter at my high school. I looked at the behaviors of many of my kids my age and realized that another accident or death was practically unavoidable. I knew I had to find some meaning in my mourning and the mourning of my school community. S.A.D.D. helped me do that.

Students Against Destructive Decisions is “a peer-to-peer education, prevention, and activism organization dedicated to preventing destructive decisions, particularly underage drinking, other drug use, risky and impaired driving, teen violence, and teen suicide” ( When I read their web site, I learned about the high rate of injury and death to teens because of risky behavior involved with drugs and alcohol. I decided to bring S.A.D.D.’s message to my school. I had several faculty members offer to sponsor my club and ADVISE S.A.D.D., and I recruited students who shared my views. Early on, some students mocked me, saying that what I was trying to do was impossible. But there were other students at my school, who wanted to spread awareness and were willing to take time out of their schoolwork to help me. After doing research, I decided to focus on the use of alcohol, drugs, and car safety, which are all major issues in teenage life, and especially in high school.

The first few months of the club were not as easy as I had hoped because we started in the middle of the school year and were not able to make a very big impact on our school and students. But as the school year went on, we were able to bring a local sheriff to our school to teach parents and students about driving safety, and soon more and more students started coming to club meetings with new ideas for programming, how to spread awareness, and how to fundraise. As the new school year begins, our S.A.D.D. chapter is ready to face the challenges of our community.

As the president of S.A.D.D. and a senior in high school, I feel like it is my job to be a good role model to the younger classmates in my school and neighborhood and to show them that it is possible to have fun without making destructive decisions. Whether it means taking a few seconds to make sure that everybody in a car is wearing a seat belt or going to a party and having a good time without using illegal substances, we can all take responsibility for keeping our friends safe and healthy. I have learned so much from this experience, and starting S.A.D.D. has been one of my proudest accomplishments.
The topic was something that we are proud of in the past 2 years
what? I didn’t say that they wanted it. They just wanted me to tell them about something that I’m proud of in the past 2 years

admin answers:

It sounds good. Next time don’t just write SADD. Spell it out especially in your first sentence. Students against drunk driving. Don’t use the word kids. Use children or students or teen drivers.

Good luck.

Sandy asks…

Citation/Ticket help?

I need to know what the fine on a seatbelt violation is in Florida. It doesn’t say on the ticket itself and when I try calling, they won’t tell me because they say the ticket isn’t registered. If someone could provide a link or just tell me, it would make my life easier.


P.S: If it matters, the county is Broward.

admin answers:

June 05, 2009 /24-7PressRelease/ — Florida’s New Primary Seat Belt Law

Article provided by Law Offices of J. Scott Nooney & Associates, please visit us at

Florida’s new seat belt law will become effective June 30th, 2009. The law is intended to reduce the number of injuries and deaths due to motor vehicle accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, over half the people killed in automobile accidents each year failed to wear their seat belts. By providing police officers with the power to pull over drivers who are not wearing seat belts, the law is expected to help decrease this number and encourage safety for drivers and their passengers. Additionally, the new law makes Florida eligible for a government grant of $35.5 million, which was created to encourage states to enact a primary seat belt law and promote safety.

Florida’s Safety Belt Law

Florida’s current safety belt law (which will be replaced by the new law on June 30th, 2009) has made not wearing a seat belt a nonmoving violation. This type of law is considered a secondary seat belt law because officers may not stop a vehicle solely for a seat belt violation; rather, officers may only ticket those in violation of the law if the motor vehicle was stopped for a moving violation.

This law provides penalties for a violation, including fines. There is a $30 fine for adults in violation of the seat belt law. For a minor (under 18 years of age), that amount doubles to $60 and the violation is issued to the responsible adult in the vehicle. Furthermore, all minors must be wearing seat belts or proper restraint (child safety seat) whether they are in the front or back seat of the vehicle. ~

Charles asks…

Do you believe in fate?

admin answers:


This belief was popular among the Greeks and Romans. According to pagan Greek mythology, the Fates were three goddesses that spun the thread of life, determined its length, and cut it.

Ecclesiastes 3:1, 2 speaks of “a time to die.” But, showing that this is not a predetermined fixed moment for the individual, Ecclesiastes 7:17 counsels: “Do not be wicked overmuch, nor become foolish. Why should you die when it is not your time?” Proverbs 10:27 says: “The years themselves of the wicked ones will be cut short.” And Psalm 55:23 adds: “As for bloodguilty and deceitful men, they will not live out half their days.” What, then, does Ecclesiastes 3:1, 2 mean? It is simply discussing the continuous cycle of life and death in this imperfect system of things. There is a time when people are born and a time when they die—usually at not more than 70 or 80 years of age, but sometimes sooner and sometimes later.—Psalms 90:10; see also Ecclesiastes 9:11.

If each one’s moment and manner of death were already fixed at the time of birth or earlier, there would be no need to avoid dangerous situations or to care for one’s health, and safety precautions would not alter mortality rates. But do you believe that a battlefield during war is as safe as one’s home far away from the war zone? Do you care for your health or take your children to the doctor? Why do smokers die three to four years younger, on an average, than nonsmokers? Why are there fewer fatal accidents when automobile passengers wear seat belts and when drivers obey traffic laws? Obviously, taking precautions is beneficial.

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Your Questions About For Those Drivers Who Were Not Wearing Safety Belts At The Time Of Their Deaths

May 24, 2013

Robert asks…

car accidents, sit bell usage?

hey whats up guys. want some extra points?

I have a proyect in my spanish class about the usage of the sit bell

how many people die for not using the sit bell ?
what percentage of this drivers who dont use it are latins, white n shit like that
what percentage of them are teenagers or adults
which organizations pormote the usage of the sit bell
do u know any laws about the usage of the sit bell
what are the fines a driver/passanger can get if not using the sit bell

the hardest part is that all the data must be gotten from chicago

admin answers:

Hello! So first of all, the “Sit Bell” is actually called a “Seat Belt”.

1) There have been no confirmed cases of a seat belt actually killing a person in an accident, Infact they do the exact same by preventing people from getting killed in collisions.

2) Since there has been no confirmed cases of an seat belt actually causing a death in a collision, we can not calculate a percentage. So there is no answer to this question.

3) The same again, as there has been no confirmed cases of a seat belt actually causing a death in a collision, we can not calculate a percentage, so again no answer to this question.

4) The organizations that promote the usage of seatbelts the most is probably the IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and usually you will find the Police promoting the usage of them too.

5) Yes, there are laws which make the usage of seatbelts mandatory, but not every road user comply’s with this law.

6) Yes, if you are caught without wearing a seatbelt, you can be pulled over by the Police, and you can get a Citation for not wearing it. It is usally $60 to $120 Fine. It can vary though depending on the department.

There you go, hope you got the answers you were looking for and good luck in your Spanish project.

Sandra asks…

Is my thesis not evident?

This is a research paper for my 11th grade English class, and I can usually write wonderful papers. I’m in a college writing class and I receive A’s on a majority of my papers. However, research papers are not my strongest point. Can someone help me incorporate a stronger thesis in my paper? Thank You!

In 2006, 158 billion text messages were sent nationwide as stated by CTIA, the wireless association. Seventeen Magazine 1,000 sixteen and seventeen year olds and reported that 46% percent of them admit to text messaging while driving, and 51% admit to talking on their cell phone while driving. claims that “Recent teen driving tragedies involving text messaging while driving are evidence that driving distractions are becoming as prevalent as drinking and driving.” According to a national survey of more than 900 teens with driver’s licenses from 26 national high schools, 37% of teens rated text messaging “extremely” or “very” distracting while driving; others most likely are not admitting that it is a distraction.
Teens claim that they “text-to-death”, but do they realize they are literally text messaging to their death? There is no statistic on how many deaths per year there are from text messaging distractions and 63% of teens do not admit that text messaging distracts them. A lot of teens have acquired the skill to text message without looking, which is not as harmful as long as they keep their eyes on the road.
Rob Callender, trends director for Teenage Research Unlimited, stated, “It’s a form of silent communication; they can do it whenever, they can do it fairly secretively.” He added, in a recent study (May 20, 2007) TRU found text messaging the second most popular use for cell phones next to using them to check the time. Teens like to text message because it is secretive, parents cannot hear it, teachers cannot hear it and the messages sent are not shown up on bills.
According to, Emilee Cox, a fourteen year old freshman holds the record for 35,463 text messages in one month. If young teens are text messaging that much it can only mean trouble for the future. If teens are not thinking clearly, they are bound to get on the road and text message, which will not be good for everyone else on the road.
While some states are still allowing drivers of all ages use their cell phone while driving, other states have banned it. “California, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Washington are the only states that have bans on all drivers using hand-held phones.”, according to an article in Land Line Magazine. It goes on to say “With the exception of New York, each of these also prohibits text messaging. Alaska, Louisiana and Minnesota have their own text messaging bans. In addition the articles mentions, “17 states forbid young drivers to use phones while behind the wheel.”, although not mentioning which specific “17 states” forbid it.
Driving behavior is not always a teen’s fault alone, they learn from their parents. 62% of teens admit that their parents talk on their cell phone while driving, 48% say their parents speed and 31% say their parents do not wear a seat belt ( Driving is a habit picked up just like any other habit. Parents are role models for their children and should try and set a better example while driving. Stricter consequences for their children to not use cell phones while driving should also be set. Although most teens have enough common sense to set their own rules and guidelines for driving, their parents should be the ones setting a prime example and enforcing strict rules with consequences following if the rules are broken.
William Van Tassel, PhD, manager of AAA Driver Training states, “Motor vehicle crashes are the number one killer of teens claiming more than 6,000 fifteen to twenty year-olds each year. Inexperience behind the wheel coupled with poor decision making construct additional reasons for teens to stay focused while they are driving. Their attention should not be divided among phones, friends and the road.” (RISMedia).
Text messaging is becoming a popular pastime and a dangerous one at that; many teens are driving around daily text messaging at the wheel and it is not safe. The statistics show that plenty of teens do it and that it is clearly an un-safe distraction. If bills to ban phone usage on the road are passed by more states, research shows the road will be a safer place.

admin answers:

The biggest problem I see is that you don’t actually state your thesis until your conclusion, which I assume is that texting while driving needs to be banned to keep the roads a safer place. You need to state that near the beginning so that the reader is clear about why you are providing all those statistics.

I would move from the introduction to the section about why teens text, and develop that a little more. You state that they text because it is secretive, but surely there are other reasons. Perhaps they feel bolder not speaking to somebody in person; perhaps because they can get away with it in school; perhaps because it allows them to hold multiple conversations at the same time. Your sources should have a little more information on that.

I would then move to your statistics on teen driving and texting. Be careful here though. You currently list statistic after statistic, with no apparent reason for them. A better form would be to make a statement, then back it up with a statistic. For example: Some states are aware of the dangers of texting and driving and have taken legislative action to protect their citizens. “California, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Washington [...] have bans on all drivers using hand-held phones,” (Land Line, pg#).

Just a trivial side note, try using inline references, like in the example I just gave you. It might reduce your word count, but your paper will flow much more nicely without all the “according to” and “so and so says”.

Next, move into the driving safety section. Begin by offering a little bit of data about teen drivers, then relate that to behavior learned from their parents. Clearly, if parents are teaching their children to drive, they are influencing the type of drivers the children will become. Good job making that connection.

Your conclusion is effective, but a little dry. It would be fantastic if you could include a true story about a teen driver who caused an accident because he or she was using their cell phone, and offer that as a moral or a natural conclusion to the grander argument about cell phone safety.

Best wishes to you!

Lizzie asks…

Who thinks the driving age should be raised?

It’s heart breaking to hear about the young teenagers killed in car accidents. When I was 18 (now 24) there were 3 people killed in car accidents that attended my school. 2 of the accidents were just weeks apart. The accidents could have been prevented. If one would have just waited a minute before he pulled out he would still be here today. The other didn’t wear his seat belt and the last was speeding. I wasn’t a very safe drive at 16 either. How many of you were really “safe” drivers? I never took anything seriously because I honestly thought nothing would ever happen to me. But now that I am “mature” and a mother of two, I take driving very seriously and I don’t care who passes me or if I’m only dong 40 in a 55!! I have my life and my childrens life to think about. When I was 16 my friends and I were just careless and never thought about the lives of others. I think SOME teenagers just want to be cool and aren’t mature enough to drive @ 16. I know some teenages are responsible tho!
Okay, so if you ever or if you do have children and one of them die in a car accident is that what you’re going to say about it? Oh well, he/she got what they deserved?? You obviously haven’t matured either!

admin answers:

I do………………

MARCH 2008

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among 15- to 20-year olds.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 3,490 drivers in this age group died in motor vehicle crashes in 2006 and an additional 272,000 were injured.

Drivers age 15- to 20-years old accounted for 12.9 percent of all the drivers involved in fatal crashes and 16 percent of all the drivers involved in police-reported crashes.

Twenty-five percent of teen drivers killed were intoxicated. In 2002 (latest data available) the estimated economic cost of police-reported crashes involving drivers between the ages of 15 and 20 was $40.8 billion, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA, ).

Among licensed drivers, young people between the ages of 15 and 20 have the highest rate of fatal crashes relative to other age groups, including the elderly. In fact, the risk of being involved in a fatal crash for teens is three times greater than for drivers age 65 to 69.

Immaturity and lack of driving experience are the two main factors leading to the high crash rate among teens.

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Your Questions About For Those Drivers Who Were Not Wearing Safety Belts At The Time Of Their Deaths

May 23, 2013

William asks…

Seat belts on school buses?

Our state is trying to get seat belts on school buses. How would you feel about seat belts being on school buses? Do you think it’s a good idea and why or do you think it’s a bad idea and why?

I’ve always felt that it might be a bad idea because I think about how much longer each bus stop would take especially for the younger children who might need help getting buckled or who take a long time to buckle and the bus would be sitting there waiting. Or if the bus were in an accident how would one adult be able to unbuckle and help all those children get off the bus quickly? After doing research I found the number of school bus accidents is low and the number of deaths from school bus accidents even lower compared to that of any other vehicle therefore my child is actually safer on the bus than in a car. I sort of feel that when it comes to school buses the risk is higher with seat belts than without.

What do you think? would you be for or against seat belts on school buses and do they have them where you live?
For those that are for seat belts…how would you deal with the issues I mentioned? Longer stops while waiting for children to buckle, children who give a hard time and refuse to buckle, younger children who struggle with buckling themselves, which would all cause the bus to be stopped at the stop much longer. I live on a busy road where the bus holds up a lot of traffic even just while stopping to pick up my son nevermind waiting for him to buckle. What if a child can’t buckle themself? They would have to hire a second adult just to buckle in children and make sure they are staying buckled?

How would you deal with an accident that left children stuck on the bus, what if the bus was on fire and your child could not get the buckle off? You have one driver and 60 something children how would that work? So how would you handle these issues to make it safe to have seat belts?
mommy of 5 I meant the time it would take to buckle when getting on the bus especially for younger children. My youngest son was still using a boster seat in the car when he started Kindergarten as was most other kids. If the law for buses were the same as vehicles we’s have most kids up until 2nd grade or so needing booster seats on the bus too LOL
I thought this was interesting

admin answers:

ARGH, I typed a pretty long answer for this one, and my stupid internet froze up, and deleted the page before I got to save it, so, here goes re typing it lol.

There are many pros and cons about them.
Yes, like you said, it’ll take em longer because of helping little kids. And if that is the rule, I’d have to assume that after each stop, the BD makes sure they’re wearing them till they get to school. So, that sucks about it. And yes, if they get into an accident, with seat belts, not everyone may get out (if there’s a lot of kids on the bus), so that’s a definite con.

While there are more cons than pros about it, there are some pros.
A lot of bus drivers go fast around stop lights. And for some, it may come to surprise when turns yellow, and they’re only feet away, so they SLAM on their breaks, and kids fly forward into the seat in front of them (unless they were playing in the isle, I don’t even wanna imagine them flying). All that because they didn’t wanna lose their job.

Better safe than sorry. I’d wanna go without them. Sure while the pros have a safety thing, if they crash into the seat in front of them, that’s not nearly as bad. Whereas getting into an accident and not being able to get everyone out on time, is 10x worse.
I think they got rid of them were I live.

Laura asks…

seat belt essay?

I need to make an essay on whether car seat belts should be required by law.
any help!

admin answers:

Legislation and risk compensation
The issue of seat belt legislation has been a source of some controversy. Hospital based studies of car accident victims, experiments using both crash test dummies and actual human cadavers have indicated that wearing seat belts should provide a reduced risk of death and injury in many types of car crash. This has led many countries to adopt mandatory seat belt wearing laws. It is generally accepted that, in comparing like-for-like accidents, a vehicle occupant wearing a properly fitted seat belt has a significantly lower chance of death or serious injury. Within the USA, 49 states now require adults to wear seat-belts; New Hampshire has no such law.

The effects of such laws are disputed, stemming from the observed fact that no country is able to demonstrate a reduction in road fatalities due to passage of a seat belt law, though deaths have in some cases been migrated from drivers to other road users. This has influenced the development of risk compensation theory, which says that drivers adjust their behaviour in response to the increased sense of personal safety wearing a seat belt provides. In one trial habitual wearers and non-wearers were asked to drive round a course a number of times under the pretence of testing different seat belt materials for comfort. It was found that non-wearers drove consistently faster when belted than when unbelted (similar responses have been shown in respect of ABS braking and, more recently, airbags). It is also possible that the types of injury modelled in the trials were only a subset of potential serious injuries — for example, oblique impacts may produce twisting forces on the head leading to diffuse axonal injury, a particularly serious type of brain injury.

Put simply, then: if one is involved in a crash, one is almost always better off wearing a seat belt. However, the probability of being in a crash in the first place may be affected by the fact that the person feels safer, so the overall safety benefit may be offset to some unspecified degree.

David asks…

Ride in the backseat until 13 years of age?

If a child should ride in the back seat (which most don’t as I’ve seen) until the age of 13 years old, what about the weight of that 13 year old? My son was in a car seat until the age of 8 and booster seat until age (I forget) 12 or so years old. So if say a 14 year old is 4 ft 10 or 11 inches and 86 lbs that is ok for the front seat? Just wondering! My answer would be 16 years old in the front seat but that is me. Even adults can be seriously injured from air bags in the front seat.. so who is to say!?

admin answers:

When we bought cars with air bags, we thought we were buying safer cars. Recent news tells us, however, that expanding air bags have been responsible for the deaths of 32 children. While alarming, this does not mean that air-bag equipped cars are dangerous. It does mean, however, that we need to rethink how we transport our children. Here’s what you need to know.

The facts

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that 30 of the 32 children who died were not properly buckled or were not wearing a safety belt. Air bags were never meant to replace belts — they were always meant to supplement them. Seat belts prevent you from being thrown out of the car in a crash. They also keep you from hitting the interior of the car. You have to wear a seat belt even if there is an air bag.

Despite mandatory safety belt use laws in all 50 states for children (and in 49 states for adults), NHTSA reports that only 68 percent of drivers and passengers regularly wear safety belts.

Air bags have saved six people for every one who has died. But for small children in the front seat who are not buckled up, air bags are deadly.

The recommendations

All children should sit in the back seat, buckled up. “NHTSA recommends all children 12 and under sit in the back seat, but the American Academy of Pediatrics doesn’t have an age cut off. Actually, sitting in the back seat is the safest for every human being,” says Dr. Murray Katcher, chair of the Committee on Injury and Poison Prevention for the American Academy of Pediatrics.
An infant in a rear facing child seat must ride in the back seat if the vehicle has a passenger-side air bag. This is because the seat will be too close to the air bag and it may injure the child if it inflates.
Buckle up correctly. All children under forty pounds are required by all fifty states to use a child safety seat. Those over forty pounds should use a booster seat until they can wear a safety belt comfortably. Don’t let children slip the shoulder part of the lap belt behind them because that is like not wearing a seat belt at all. If the shoulder strap does not fit, use a booster seat.
If a child must ride in the front, move the seat as far back as possible, to be away from the air bag. Make sure the child is buckled up properly.
What to say to your children
Older kids who are used to sitting in front may balk at getting in the back. Many families have kids take turns sitting in front, or even use sitting in front as a reward. How can a parent change this situation?

Janet Dewey, Executive Director of the Air Bag Safety Campaign (and mother of a five-year-old) recomends you say something like, “You need to protect your head in the car just like you do when you wear a helmet to ride a bike. Sitting in the back protects your head in the car.”

You can tell your children that you know they like to sit in the front and that you are not punishing them. Dewey advises you can also say, “I just learned that airbags aren’t safe for kids and that it’s actually safest for kids to sit in the back seat with a seatbelt on — so that’s where you need to sit.”

Dewey adds that you should reduce the size of carpools so no one sits in the front.

The future
The automotive industry and the government are doing everything they can to make air bags safe. Letters are being sent by manufacturers to car owners, warning that children should sit in the back. Air bag warnings are being installed in new cars. The government may allow installation of an on-off switch or a total disconnect of air bags, but this option is very controversial. “There is no doubt that the greatest threat to the health of our children today is not air bags, the greatest threat is children being in a crash while riding unbuckled or incorrectly buckled,” says Dewey.

New air bags are being designed to be “smarter.” They will be able to tailor their deployment to the size of the occupant and the crash severity. In addition, new air bags will be depowered 20-35 percent, so women and children will be safer. Current air bags are overpowered because they were designed to protect adult males.

Questions about air bags can be directed to the Auto Safety Hotline at 800-424-9393. For up-to-date information on air bag issues, contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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Your Questions About For Those Drivers Who Were Not Wearing Safety Belts At The Time Of Their Deaths

May 22, 2013

Jenny asks…

mistakes made drinking underage??

ok so i have to do a report on underage drinking and i would like to know what your opions are on it.
and if anyone has any good storys about drinking or mixing drugs that would help to.

i am 14.
and i do drink.
i dont do drugs and i have smoked.
my report is on the downside of underage drinking so i am being sort of a hipercrite.

admin answers:

Consequences of Acute Impairment

Acute consequences of underage drinking include unintentional death and injury associated with driving or engaging in other risky tasks after drinking, homicide and violence, suicide attempts, sexual assault, risky sexual behavior, and vandalism and property damage. In addition, these consequences appear to be more severe for those who start drinking at a young age (Reducing Underage Drinking, 59).

Drinking and Driving

* Although alcohol-related youth motor vehicle fatalities have decreased substantially over the past decade or so, youth are still overrepresented in alcohol-related fatal crashes compared with the older population2 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 60).

* While only 7 percent of licensed drivers in 2000 were aged 15 to 20, they represented approximately 13 percent of drivers involved in fatal crashes who had been drinking3 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 60).

* According to Grunbaum et al. (2002), 38.3 percent of Latinos, 30.3 percent of whites, and 27.6 percent of African Americans [in the 9th to 12th grades] rode with a driver who had been drinking alcohol. And 14.7 percent of whites, 13.1 percent of Latinos, and 7.7 percent of African Americans … admitted to driving a car after drinking alcohol4 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 60).

* [Y]oung people who have been drinking are less likely to wear a safety belt. They are more likely to get in a car with an intoxicated driver: 41 percent of frequent heavy drinkers reported riding with an intoxicated driver, compared with only 14 percent of those who never drank5 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 60).

Homicide, Suicide, and Crime

* Alcohol has been reported to be involved in 36 percent of homicides, 12 percent of male suicides, and 8 percent of female suicides involving people under 21—a total of about 1,500 homicides and 300 suicides in 2000. Homicide is the second leading cause of death for 15- to 24-year-olds6 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 61).

* [I]ndividuals under the age of 21 commit 45 percent of rapes, 44 percent of robberies, and 37 percent of other assaults,7 and it is estimated that 50 percent of violent crime is alcohol-related8 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 61).

* [O]n college campuses 95 percent of all violent crime and 90 percent of college rapes involve the use of alcohol by the assailant, victim, or both9 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 61).

Sexual Activity

* [M]ore than 70,000 students aged 18-24 are victims of alcohol-related sexual assault or date rape10 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 62).

* [Y]oung people seem to be aware that using alcohol influences their decisions about sexual behavior: 29 percent of 15- to17-year-olds and 37 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds said that alcohol or drugs influenced their decision to do something sexual11 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 62).

* A college survey conducted by the Boston University School of Public Health showed that among drinkers, those who [were first drunk] before the age of 13 were twice as likely to have unplanned sex and more than twice as likely to have unprotected sex12 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 62).

Effects on the Adolescent Brain

New research on adolescent brain development suggests that early heavy alcohol use may also have negative effects on the actual physical development of brain structure13 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 64).

Youth with alcohol use disorders also performed worse on memory tests than nondrinkers, further suggesting that the structural difference in hippocampus size was affecting brain functioning14 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 65).

[A]lcohol use during adolescence may have a direct effect on brain functioning: negative effects included decreased ability in planning and executive functioning, memory, spatial operations, and attention15 (Reducing Underage Drinking, 65).

Joseph asks…

illinois…new teen driving law,, 16 17 or 18 im so confused.?

can somebody plz explain to me the new illinois teen driving law..its so confusing.can i drive at 16 or not.can u plez explain the whole thing in easy terms..

admin answers:

Initial Licensing Phase – Drivers Age 16-17

Curfew is Sunday through Thursday, 11 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 12:01 a.m. (curfew applies only to 16 year olds; local curfews may differ)
Must have completed a state-approved driver education course
All occupants under age 19 must wear safety belts
For the first six months of licensing, or until the driver is age 18, whichever occurs first, the number of passengers is limited to one person under age 20, unless the additional passenger(s) is a sibling, step-sibling, child or step-child of the driver. After this period, the number of passengers is limited to one in the front seat and the number of safety belts in the back seat
Parental or guardian consent is required to obtain a license; a parent must verify that a minimum of 50 hours of practice driving, including 10 hours of night driving, has been completed


Limit one court supervision for serious offenses
Conviction of any moving violation before age 18 generates a Secretary of State warning letter to the parent and the teenager
Conviction of two moving violations in a 24-month period results in a minimum one-month license suspension. Suspension length is determined by the seriousness of the offenses and the driver’s prior driving history
Suspended drivers required to attend a remedial education course may be retested and pay a $70 reinstatement fee


Full Licensing Phase – Drivers 18-20

No age-related restrictions apply


Limit one court supervision for serious offenses
Conviction of two moving violations in a 24-month period results in a minimum one-month suspension. Suspension length is determined by the seriousness of the offenses and the driver’s prior driving history
Suspended drivers are required to pay a $70 reinstatement fee


Frequently Asked Questions

Does a graduated driver licensing system raise the minimum age at which an individual may apply for a driver’s license?
Absolutely not. Under “Graduate to Safety,” 16 remains the age at which a teen that has successfully completed driver education may apply for a driver’s license. The graduated system establishes additional training requirements during the instruction permit phase, resulting in better-trained 16-year-old drivers.

Have graduated driver-licensing systems been effective in other states and is it necessary in Illinois?
Yes. Graduated driver licensing systems have proven effective in reducing the number of traffic crashes and convictions among young people in other states. In Illinois teenagers make up only 6 percent of the total driving population, yet account for 16 percent of all automobile deaths. Maryland has seen a 5 percent reduction in automobile crashes and a 10 percent reduction in traffic convictions. California has experienced a 4 percent reduction in automobile crashes and a 20 percent reduction in convictions. Through “Graduate to Safety,” teen drivers receive more training, and those who prove to be unsafe drivers are taken off the road for additional training before they can become fully licensed.

Why does “Graduate to Safety” limit the number of passengers in a car driven by a teen?
Drivers in the permit phase (age 15) and the initial licensing phase (ages 16 and 17) are limited to one passenger in the front seat and the number of safety belts in the back seat. After January 1, 2004 the new initial license holder will be limited to only one passenger under the age of twenty during the first six months of their license or until the license holder reaches the age of 18, whichever occurs first. These restrictions reduce the likelihood a driver will be distracted by a car full of fellow teens. Limiting the number of passengers to the number of safety belts also helps to ensure that everyone in the vehicle is properly restrained.

How will the “limit of one passenger under age 20″ rule work for the teenager that receives their license prior to January of 2004?
A teenager (16 or 17 years old) receiving their initial license prior to January 1, 2004 will be restricted after the effective date of January 1, for the remainder of the six months from issuance of that license. For example, if the under 18 year old driver was issued a license on Sept. 7, 2003 they would need to comply with the only one passenger under 20 rule from January 1, 2004 until March 7, 2004.

Will this prevent my 16-year-old teenager from driving their brother, sister and cousin to events?
The brother and sister (siblings) will not count; they are exempt under this law. The cousin, if under the age of 20 will be counted as the one passenger.

If required passengers are not belted in the vehicle while my teenager is driving who will be cited?
If the driver is under age 18 they will be cited for the violation if anyone under age 18 is unrestrained in the vehicle. It is the discretion of the officer to cite passengers over age 16 (and under age 18) in the back seat. Any passenger over age 16 in the front seat will be cited.

Linda asks…

Is this rude or impolite?

I wrote this letter to my parents. would you consider it rude or impolite? do you think it’ll work? thanks!

Dear Mama and Papa,

Please read this entire letter. The subject which I am writing about is one that matters a great deal to me. It’s something that I think and stress and worry about quite often, more than you can imagine. It’s a topic that we seem to find difficult to talk about, but clearly, it means a lot to me, therefore it is something that we should be able to talk about. As I’m sure you’ve already guessed, this is about how you won’t let me get in a car driven by one of my friends.

I understand that you are sick and tired of hearing about this. But there is simply no way that I can continue to obey you and abstain from riding in a car with my friends. It’s growing to be too much of a hassle. I’m not asking you to completely change your mind, but I would really love it if you looked at the whole situation rationally, and took my opinions into consideration as you decide wether or not we could reach some kind of compromise. Please understand that I DO respect your authority and your opinions. I only ask that you keep an open mind as you keep reading.

I realize that it is perfectly normal for parents to worry about their children being in a car with a young driver. Most parent’s don’t allow their children to be driven by someone who‘s just gotten their license – in fact, it’s illegal. Illinois law states that one must have had their license for a year to have a minor passenger. However, Sam and Joey have both had their licenses for nearly two years. I think that that’s a long enough time to gain enough experience to drive safely. I believe that lawmakers spend a lot of time thinking about when a person is old enough and has had enough experience to do certain things. I’ve taken a look at Illinois driving laws, and they’re very strict in comparison to other states. In Illinois, unlike many other states, it is a requirement to take at least one semester of a traffic safety class (if you’re under the age of 18), which has been proven to reduce the risk of fatal accidents t by 38-48%. Clearly, whoever makes the laws has spent a lot of time thinking about them, especially since state driving laws have changed a lot in the recent years.

I also understand that you don’t trust anyone else with my safety. You must realize, though, that if anyone has any control of my safety (which I doubt) it’s me. Nearly 75% of teenagers killed in fatal crashes could’ve avoided death if they had been wearing seat belts. I decide wether or not I wear a seat belt, not the driver. And besides, what makes you think that the age of the driver determines their maturity on the road? I believe that teenagers may take driving even more seriously than adults, since we are constantly bombarded with lectures and stories about the importance of driving safely. Every year, we sit through some sort of assembly about the consequences of reckless driving. Our teachers are constantly reminding us to be careful. We’ve not only heard horror stories about teenagers getting seriously injured in car wrecks, but we actually know the people in those stories. Even after hearing those stories and witnessing the consequences, I still feel like I should be able to ride in a car with my friends. I am either a very stupid person, or someone with enough confidence to make difficult decisions. One thing that I know for sure is that I’m not naive. The rest, well, that’s your opinion.

I’m not trying to compare you to other parents, but everyone else is permitted to ride in a car with their friends. That’s not an exaggeration. I honestly don’t know a single person who isn’t allowed to be driven by a teenager, besides myself. I feel very excluded, and this makes me quite sad. I’m not saying that you should be like Alexa’s parents or Lori’s parents, who don’t really care who‘s driving and where they’re going. But maybe we could reach a compromise, like Jennifer and Lindsay’s parents, who must know who‘s driving and insist that their children text them every hour to let them know what’s up. I would be more than happy to text you every half an hour, or even every fifteen minutes, if that would make you more comfortable. A compromise isn’t about giving up your peace of mind and happiness. It’s about making sure that everyone is somewhat satisfied.

Please don’t be angry with me, and please take what you’ve read into consideration. You might not feel like we need to talk about this, but I do, because it’s hurting me.

Thank you for reading this.

Mel :)

admin answers:

I think it is very mature – I would have never considered writing to my parents but everyone is different. You do for the most part present a rational and logical argument. It is also clear you have given this some thought and done your homework on the subject.

“And besides, what makes you think that the age of the driver determines their maturity on the road?” Your follow up opinion that young drivers are more mature could probably be disproved by the number of young drivers involved in crashes, deaths on the road, disqualifications, DUI’s etc! I think that young drivers are in general less mature on the road, but you are right that you can have mature younger drivers and irresponsible older drivers.

“We’ve not only heard horror stories about teenagers getting seriously injured in car wrecks, but we actually know the people in those stories.” – I would remove this, I don’t think it really aids your point much but it could harm it. I would be thinking I don’t want my little girl to be just like her dead friends/classmates.

“I am either a very stupid person, or someone with enough confidence to make difficult decisions. One thing that I know for sure is that I’m not naive.” – how about ” I have grown old enough to have the confidence to make difficult decisions and one thing that I know for sure is that I’m not naive.” – that just removes the “I am either a very stupid person” which doesn’t help you in any way and only brings your argument down.

I don’t know if you wanted any tips but I was just giving my thoughts on how you could word it better to sell your point and achieve your goal which after all is the letters purpose.

Good job!

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