Buckle up, it is the law (except for New Hampshire).

Our automobile accident attorneys know that everyone in a car should be buckled properly in their seat belts.  Countless personal injury claims are made every year where someone didn’t wear a seat belt and suffered a traumatic brain injury or wrongful death after flying through the windshield after a car crash.

On the positive side, we have seen many car accidents where people walked away from the scene of a major auto accidents all because they wore their seat belts.

In short, wearing a seat belt can prevent wrongful death.  Seat belts are a proven way of preventing injuries that require medical treatment.  Getting medical treatment after a car accident can be confusing, but our medical treatment resource page can help with any questions you may have.

There are some problems, however, that occur when children become entangled in a seat belt and strangle themselves.  These children’s injuries often occur when a young child is with reach of a seat belt, pulls it all the way out and wraps the belt around his or her head, neck or waist — possibility causing head injuries, back injuries and neck injuries.

Most seat belts have a locking mechanism, called Lower Anchors and Tether for Children (LATCH), that is activated when the seat belt is pulled out all the way.  The LATCH system was designed for child seat installation.  When the locking system is activated, your child may or may not be able to free him or herself from it.

Here are some tips from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to help you prevent an injury to your child from seat belt entanglement:

  • Do not let your child play in or around automobiles.
  • Never leave a child unattended in or around an automobile.
  • Make sure that your child is properly restrain in his or her seat belt or child car seat.
  • Teach your child that seat belts are not toys.

If your child has an unused seat belt nearby, here are two tips to avoid personal injury:

  • Buckle up unused seat belts.
  • If your child safety seat is installed with a LATCH system, consult your child seat and owner’s manual before installing the seat.

As personal injury lawyers, we hope you never have to go through the agony of personal injury or, worst case, wrongful death to your child.  No parent should ever out-live their children.  If you follow these safety tips, hopefully you will never have to go through the experience of burying your child because of a seat belt entanglement.

Tomorrow we conclude our series with Avoiding Children’s Injuries Part Six – Trunk Entanglement.

Please contact us for a FREE CONSULTATION with an experienced personal injury lawyer — in either English or Spanish — at (800) 655-6585 or click here to submit your case for a Free Review.