A series of fatal car accidents in the Wichita area prompted Kansas Transportation Secretary Julie Lorenz to speak out on the need for more drivers to wear their seat belts. Talking with KAKE, Lorenz stated that 427 people were killed in traffic accidents on Kansas roads in a recent year. Speeding and failure to wear a seat belt contributed to many of these fatal car accidents in Kansas during that short window of time.
The Importance of Always Wearing Your Seat Belt
Even though Kansas seat belt laws require adults to wear a seat belt when driving or riding in the front seat, some vehicle occupants decide not to. The consequences of failing to use a seat belt can be catastrophic.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states traffic accidents are one of the top causes of death in Americans aged 30 and younger. Simply wearing a seat belt can reduce the risk of death or serious injury in a car collision by 50 percent.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 51 percent of passenger vehicle occupants killed in traffic accidents one recent year were not buckled up. Seat belts protect you from the force of a collision by keeping you restrained against your seat. If you aren’t buckled up, you could be thrown around the car or even be ejected from the vehicle and onto the road.
Some motorists believe that airbags offer sufficient protection from a collision, but this is not true. The force an airbag hits you with during a collision can severely injure or even kill you if you aren’t restrained. Properly wearing a seat belt is the most effective safety measure you can take to protect yourself in a crash.
Fatal Car Accident Statistics in Kansas
According to the CDC, seat belt use in Kansas falls below the national average. While 86 percent of motorists and front-seat passengers across the United States wear seat belts, only 80 percent do in Kansas. That may explain why the average death rate in Kansas was higher than the national average for all age groups in the year examined by the CDC.
Data compiled by the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) reports more than half of all people killed in traffic accidents in Kansas in one recent year were unrestrained at the time. Of the 333 car accident victims that year, a staggering 186 weren’t buckled up.
Talk to an Experienced Car Accident Attorney in Wichita, KS Today
If you were injured or lost a loved one in a Wichita car accident, you may be owed compensation for your losses. At Mann Wyatt Tanksley Injury Attorneys, our attorneys have extensive experience representing victims of car accidents in injury and wrongful death claims. Contact one of our Kansas car accident lawyers today for a free consultation to discuss your case.