Wearing seatbealts in the back of a car

January 7, 2006 at 12:50 pm Leave a comment

A while ago, I really don’t remember exactly, it became mandatory, here in Belgium, for passengers in a car to always use their seatbelts, even when seated in the back. It used to be only mandatory when sitting in the front. Now, a lot of people in their thirties, my generation basically, grew up when this wasn’t mandatory. So they have a habit of not wearing them when seated in the back of the car. But when they drive, or sit in the front, they are very conscious about putting them on.

The reason why they are conscious about it, is that their parents were not so strict with it, even while the authorities demanded of them they put their seatbelts on. And, at a certain age, children develop a tendency to think their parents are pretty ignorant. When this is even confirmed by government sources, it’s hard not to feel pretty smug as a budding adolescent. I mean, you just know that seatbelts are safe, and yet your parents are too arrogant to even consider putting them on ! Oh, the foolishness. So, you decide that you will always put them on when driving a car later. It’s a simple enough action, and it will give you a much greater chance of survival in a collision. So why not put them on ? I mean, why the hell not?

So there you are, 20 years later, in the back of a car, without seatbelts. You never considered putting them on while in the back, because, government officials never told you to in your childhood, and your parents certainly didn’t bother with them. And even if those people had told you, your rebellious nature would have probably ignored them anyway.
Now my point is – I do have one occasionally – that if you are going to wear your seatbelts in the front, you should put them on in the back as well. It’s pure logic : if you are in a collision as a passenger in the backseat of a car, do you really think that the manufacturer of the car has installed some kind of force-field there, which blocks all forms of damaging energy? Or do you think your whole body will get catapulted forward at a speed you have never experienced in your life, and then will be stopped by a hard object – which every object is at that speed – smashing into one of your vital parts, like, let’s say a liver or a head? Every scientific study predicts the second option, and up to this date, even Stephen Hawking has not found any inconsistencies in such work.

So why don’t you wear it in the back of a car? And I do mean : you. The reason is simple, you wear it in the front of a car, not because you think it’s safe, but because your parents didn’t. So there is no logic there, and as such, when you sit in the back of a car, that absent logic does not dictate you to put on your seatbelt.

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Entry filed under: Truly important stuff.

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