According to NHTSA.gov, seat belts saved the lives of nearly 15,000 people in 2016. However, 2,500 individuals lost their lives that year as a result of failing to buckle up.
Being something so simple, it may seem too good to be true. Even so, wearing your seat belt is enough to reduce your risk of a fatal crash by almost fifty percent.
Interestingly enough, a vehicle’s air bag system is designed to be dependent upon the help of a seat belt. One may think that an air bag would be sufficient in saving a life in the event of an accident. However, air bags can often inflict serious injury without the use of a seat belt.
In New Zealand, the New Zealand Transport Agency and the Clemenger BBDO Wellington decided they needed to team up to start a campaign in hopes to spread awareness on this matter. Studies show that young men, in particular, are the least likely of any demographic to wear their seat belts. That being said, the campaign is targeted towards these young men, using survivor testimonials in advocacy.
Hundreds of individuals came forward to tell the stories of their survival. Though each story is powerful in its own way, only ten were selected to be featured in the campaign. A team of makeup artists examined photos of these men from after the crash, and attempted to recreate their wounds. These injuries in these images may be unsettling, but are powerful in the sense that these survivors are able to stand tall today, alive and proud, for this movement.
Pictured above, this man by the name of Liam Bethell survived a car accident on August 8th, 2017. His story on the beltedsurvivors.nz website reads:Liam was T-boned by a truck 200 metres from home. He broke most of his ribs, three discs in his back and had a brain bleed that put him in a coma for ten days.
He woke up the day before his daughter was born.
His seatbelt saved his life.
There are many more beautiful survival stories that can be found on the website linked above. As we move forward this year, let’s be thankful for all that we have (which happens to be the same thing as all that we have to lose). Although it may be hard to admit, the electronic billboards you read on the way to work are right. Wear a seat belt!
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