Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Wearing A Seat Belt
Q: My shoulder harness chokes me. I have the clip set as low as it will go. My carotid artery in my neck gets choked off whenever I turn my head to look out the drivers side. I have tried many kinds of things that are supposed to prevent this, but none work. How can I drive with seatbelt fastened without injuring myself? I am short, but I can see out my windshield fine, so now what can I do?

A: Indiana law requires seat belt use for all occupants in passenger cars and trucks. One thing I routinely encounter is persons who wear the belts incorrectly; i.e. tucked under the armpit, or older motorized belts where the top part is on, but not the bottom lap portion. These are incorrect.

In short, to be compliant with Indiana seat belt laws, you MUST wear the belts as 'designed by the vehicle manufacturer intended', which is in the traditional lap and shoulder harness, worn on the outer portion of the shoulder.

If your car does not allow height adjustment on the B pillar area, and you find discomfort, you may look into aftermarket "clips" that can be designed to reposition the points of the belt. A google search should return several options for you.

Otherwise, I can tell you from first hand experience in working hundreds of crashes, that NOT wearing your belt does a lot more personal injury- and death I have seen- by not wearing that belt. Do yourself a favor and wear your belt when driving.


posted by South Bend Police Department @ 11:08 AM  

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