GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - At around 11 p.m. Thursday, a woman was killed in a wreck on Interstate 20 in Grand Prairie. According to police, one car side swiped another, pushing the first vehicle off of the highway.
The driver, a 21-year-old woman, wasn't wearing a seat belt and was thrown from her car and killed. The driver of the other car sustained injuries that are not thought to be life-threatening.
Police say the woman would have survived the crash if she had been wearing her seat belt.
Is it illegal to drive in Texas without wearing a seat belt?
Like every state except for New Hampshire, Texas law requires that all drivers and passengers wear a seat belt. Under the statute, the driver is responsible for making sure all passengers put on their seatbelts.
What happens if I don't wear a seat belt?
Aside from getting a fine and potentially appearing before a judge, you're putting your life at risk every time you drive without wearing your seat belt. According to the National Highway Safety Administration, you're 45 percent more likely to survive a bad wreck if you buckle up. That's huge.
Why would anyone not wear a seat belt?
With those statistics, you have to wonder why anyone would forgo this simple solution. Sometimes, people forget. However, there are a few myths that may entice people to give up their seat belt on purpose. These include:
- I'm a good driver and I've never been in a wreck, so I don't need to wear a seat belt.
- I'm strong and I can brace myself against my steering wheel in a crash.
- I'm safer not wearing a seat belt since it can trap me in my car if it's on fire or under water.
- My car has airbags so I don't need a seat belt.
And now for the facts:
- Being a good driver isn't enough. You can't control the actions of those around you.
- Multiply your weight by the speed you're traveling to discover how strong you'd have to be to brace yourself against your steering wheel in a wreck. For instance, a 150 pound person going 35 mph would need to exert 5,250 pounds of force! Are you Superman? Then you should buckle up.
- Only .005 percent of crashes actually involve either fire or water.
- Airbags are more effective when used in conjunction with a seat belt.
It's the law for a reason. Stay safe and buckle up!