If you are improperly buckled during a crash, you risk becoming a projectile and injuring or killing others in the vehicle. Even when you’re alone in the vehicle, if you aren’t properly buckled, an unpredictable situation can cause you to swerve or brake suddenly, forcing you from the driver’s seat which is likely to cause a crash. You might argue that seat belt use is a personal decision, but that argument just doesn’t hold up; it affects us all.
Seat belts are the single most effective traffic safety device for preventing death and injury in a crash. On top of that, you’re probably breaking the law by not wearing one.
YES! Doctors recommend it. Buckling up through all stages of your pregnancy is the single most effective action you can take to protect yourself and your unborn child in a crash. Never drive or ride in a car without buckling up first!
The shoulder belt should be away from your neck (but not off your shoulder) and across your chest (between your breasts). Be sure to remove any slack from your seat belt. Never place the belt under your arm or behind your back.
The lap belt should be secured below your belly so that it fits snugly across your hips and pelvic bone. Never place it over or on top of your belly.
YES. Choose a comfortable, upright position, and keep as much distance as possible between your belly and the steering wheel. You should be able to comfortably reach the steering wheel and pedals.
You still need to wear your seat belt properly. Air bags are designed to work with seat belts, not replace them. Without a seat belt, you could crash into the vehicle interior, other passengers, or be ejected from the vehicle.
NO. Doctors recommend pregnant women wear seat belts and leave the air bags turned on. Seat belts and air bags work together to provide the best protection for you and your unborn child.
Seek immediate medical attention, even if you think you are not injured, regardless of whether you were the driver or a passenger.
* This campaign is supported by HRSA as part of an award totalling $2,134,389. The contents are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement by HRSA.
Believe it or not, there are right and wrong ways to wear a seat belt. By wearing a seat belt properly, it will better absorb fatal forces of a crash and be less likely to cause harm to vital internal organs. Be aware of the proper way to wear a seat belt.
A recent National Highway Transportation Safety Administration survey revealed that 20 percent of all drivers of child passengers did not read any instructions on how to properly install their child restraints, yet 90 percent felt “confident” or “very confident” that their car seats and booster seats were installed correctly.
Common errors include:
In addition, be sure to:
Visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to learn more.
Wear a seat belt every trip, whether it's day or night, near or far and regardless of your spot in the vehicle.
Wear the seat belt properly to better absorb fatal forces of a crash.