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Want to survive a car crash? Better buckle up

It's astounding how many Americans get into their cars without putting on a seat belt. Personal injury lawyers who deal with the aftermath of car accidents are intimately aware of how risky it is to ride in a vehicle without using a seat belt. Indeed, the difference between wearing a seat belt and not wearing one can mean the difference between not suffering a single injury in a collision and being dead.

Wearing a seat belt is just as important for back seat passengers as it is for front seat passengers. Nevertheless, this is one area of the car where riders are less likely to buckle. In a collision, these unrestrained riders can become like missiles. When speeds and gravitational forces are high enough, they often get ejected from the vehicles they're riding in to be found -- often lifeless --on the pavement nearby the crash site after a wreck has occurred.

As Uber, Lyft and taxicabs rise in popularity, the issue of using a seat belt in the back of a car becomes even more important and relevant. For some strange reason, customers of taxis and ridesharing services are more likely to go without a seat belt.

Also, a lot of backseat passengers have the incorrect idea that riding in there is somehow safer than in the front. In fact, four out of five surveyed respondents recently admitted that they don't wear seat belts on short trips when they are riding in the back seat.

If you're injured in a car accident that isn't your fault -- but the fault of another negligent or unlawful party -- you can still pursue a lawsuit for financial compensation regardless of whether you were wearing a seat belt. However, isn't it preferable to stay safe and potentially avoid getting hurt or killed in the first place?

Source: USA Today, "Unbuckled in the back seat? You'll become a human missile in a crash," Sophia Tulp, Aug. 03, 2017

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