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Do seatbelts cause injuries?

On Behalf of | Mar 14, 2023 | Car Accidents

It’s possible that at some point you may find yourself in a car accident while driving in Tennessee. And while most accidents are relatively minor, injuries can and do happen.

A car accident is a violent collision, involving heavy objects traveling at high speeds. And injuries can happen in a variety of ways. A seatbelt is designed to protect you, but a seatbelt can also cause injuries.

How seatbelts can injure

The main danger in a vehicle accident is the way your body’s momentum changes violently in an instant. The car you’re riding in stops moving, but your body is inclined to keep going.

A seatbelt prevents you from flying into the steering wheel, dashboard, windshield, seatback and other passengers. But doing so puts a great deal of force onto the areas of your body being strapped in by the belt.

A seatbelt can cause injuries to areas like your shoulder, ribs, chest, or sternum. The rapid compression of tissue can cause bruising, your ribs or organs might be injured, and you can tear tendons or muscles in your shoulder. The seatbelt itself can also tear or abrade your skin in the area where it restrained you.

Seatbelts can injure, but do more good than harm

While it’s true that a seatbelt can harm you during an accident, remember that seatbelts are an overall lifesaver, and you should always wear a seatbelt when driving.

Suffering damage to your shoulder, chest or ribs is painful, but it’s far better than the alternative of smashing against an unyielding object like a steering wheel, or flying through the windshield at high speeds. Seatbelts have saved thousands upon thousands of lives since their introduction and popularization.

While a seatbelt can prevent death or serious injury in an auto accident, it’s possible to suffer injuries from the seatbelt. These injuries tend to be in the area of your torso restrained by the belt, but they’re usually not life-threatening.