75% of traffic fatalities in Missouri are unbuckled travelers

Published: Mar. 4, 2020 at 5:07 PM CST
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The signs along the interstates show a scary number: 93 deaths on the roads since January 1. And 75% killed weren't wearing their seat belts.

It's not a number the Missouri Highway Patrol likes to see: 75% of drivers and passengers dying in crashes are not wearing a seat belt.

"It is high, and it is concerning," said Missouri Highway Patrol Trooper Sam Carpenter. "Because it's a simple statistic to eliminate."

Trooper Carpenter emphasized that seat belts do save lives.

"The statistic, that I think the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration puts out," Carpenter began. "Is that you reduce your risk of serious injury or death by 50% just by buckling up."

For many of us, it's second nature, you hop in the car and snap on your seat belt. And for the most part, Missourians do a great job of that, 87% on average do buckle up before they hit the road. But some don't, citing such excuses as it wrinkles their clothes or it's uncomfortable, and some think that airbags alone will do the trick if they're involved in a crash."

"Airbags alone won't help you," said Carpenter. "Seat belts are designed to work with the airbag, a seat belt will keep you in your vehicle in the case of a rollover."

"If you come out of your vehicle," he added. "It's statistically shown that you will suffer a fatal injury 75% of the time if you're ejected, those are terrible odds"