Beware of the Beltless
The Beware of the Beltless campaign was created to address the public health crisis of unrestrained fatalities in Colorado. The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is fighting back and has launched a new campaign for 2016 to encourage every resident and visitor to Colorado to buckle up.
Unbuckled passengers in vehicles pose a serious risk to those around them: Exposure to unbelted occupants increases the risk of injury or death to other occupants in the vehicle by 40 percent.
It's About You, but Not Just About You.
When you don't buckle up, you endanger more than your own life. Drivers and passengers alike often fail to consider how unbuckled occupants continue moving, sometimes at high speed, during a crash. When that happens, they become projectiles capable of seriously hurting or killing other people in the vehicle.
Being unbuckled also increases your chance of being thrown from the car—regardless of your position within it. In fact, an unbelted rear-seat passenger increases the risk of fatality for the driver by 137 percent, compared with a belted rear-seat occupant.
The dangers posed by an unbelted driver can also extend well past the car itself. An unsecured driver who swerves to avoid a collision can easily be thrown into the passenger seat and lose control of the vehicle, endangering other vehicles and pedestrians alike.
Being unbuckled also makes you 30 times more likely to be ejected—one of the most lethal outcomes of crashes.
Whether behind the wheel or in the back seat, every occupant in a vehicle is vulnerable to the physical forces of a crash. So remember to buckle up every time and don't be afraid to ask others to do the same.