3 Stories on why you should Always wear your seat belt.
Story #1 Back-roads and Belt-less
While traveling in a third-world country this year, I ended up in the back of a van without a seat-belt. I didn't think too much of it, despite my normal absolute instance (see below for the first-grader with broken arm story) on wearing a seat-belt in any moving vehicle. But this was in another country, a small road, with nobody around for kilometers. What did I have to worry about? Nothing. Or so I thought. --To be continued
I'll get back to what happened next, but first, a couple other stories...
Story # 2: A Sad Tale
There's a sad story. It happened after graduation one year. Miss White, riding on the back of a car across the parking lot, with her arms full of flowers for her mom; she was so happy. Until they hit a speed-bump. She fell, and hit her head. Then followed years of heartache for her parents, as she lived unable to speak or move.Years later she died. It was so tragic.
Story # 3 "Seat Belts: Your Single Most Effective Safety Step."
Then on the other-hand, there's a story with a happier ending. My little, pesky brother didn't quite get the idea of minding his own business - not when it came to people who'd drive away from out house not wearing seat-belts. He would always say something. Now, let me tell you, I'm all for for seat-belts. Completely. All the time. (As a small child I had a very serious compound fracture, and while being put in a car to drive to meet the ambulance, all I could sob out, as I held my bloody arm with the other was "put my seat-belt on! put my seat-belt on!") But, sadly, I felt it was a faux pas to say something to our guests. So I didn't say anything. (And though I may have tried shushing my brother, happily- I failed!)
One day, a family friend told us that he'd saved her life! She said she used to be in the habit of not putting on her seat-belt. But just to humor my little brother, she had started using it - at least as she'd leave our home. Then at her house, it was a little more automatic since, as she'd backed out of her own driveway, she could just hear (remember) his little voice telling her to "put you seat-belt on!" So she just did. Then one day, after remembering that cute little boy, and making good use of her seat-belt, she was hit and in an awful accident. But, since she buckled-up, she was kept in her seat, inside the car, and was spared a nasty death!
Story #1 continued: Belt-less and BANG
So back to my first story. There I was, in the back of the van, digging through my purse, and seat-belt-less. So there we were; tired, hot, and ready to get out of there. We couldn't wait to get back to the hotel for a swim, cold shower, and AC. We zipped along that dirt road like it was nothing. Then in the middle of nowhere there was a huge bump in the road, the same color dirt as everything else, including the road. Bump, went the van. and BANG, went my head! I flew up and hit the ceiling. My head banged, then my neck bent over to the side. Wow, did that hurt or what! What we thought was no big deal (no seat-belts), was a very big deal: I ended up with a concision. Dizzy and dazed for two days, couldn't focus and think straight, and I didn't want to swim anymore either.
Car accidents are being called "crashes" by the authorities these days, when people die due to lack of seat-belt use (often being thrown from the car); "it's no accident, it could have been prevented. Easily." -CHP Officer last week reporting on the local news deaths of some teens who were thrown from their car, which then rolled on-top of them, killing them. It didn't have to happen; but it happens all the time. Comma, concussion, flying off (or through the window) of a car, does not feel good. It doesn't end well.
Do yourself a huge favor this summer; properly wear your seat-belt!