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BUCKLE UP - SAVE A LIFE

''Belt your wife - save her life", "Click it or ticket'', and "Buckle up its the law", are a sayings we've heard frequently over the years.

Seat belts were first offered by U.S. automobile manufacturers in the early sixties. Those pesky old belts have been around for 40 years now but we still see people operating motor vehicle without them. The National Safety Council reports in their 1992 Accident Facts edition that 43,500 motor vehicle deaths took place in 1951; 3,500 of these deaths happened at work. The cost of these motor vehicle accidents was an astronomical 96.1 billion dollars! Many of these injuries and deaths could have been prevented if those involved had taken time to ''buckle up".

Studies by the National Highway Traffic Administration show that manual lap and shoulder belts are effective in preventing fatalities, 50% effective in preventing moderate to critical injuries, and 10% effective in preventing minor injuries. In early 1992 over 40 states had enacted mandatory safety belt use laws, but studies show that only 55% of the motoring public wear their seat belts.

Many new cars and trucks are now equipped with supplemental restraint systems (SRS), better know as air bags. For the SRS to be effective the operator and/or the passenger must be wearing their seat belt to fully benefit from the air bag.

You may think of many reasons why you don't or can't wear your belt -- "they're uncomfortable", 'what happens if I'm knocked unconscious and can't get out", "hey, I'm only going to the store, nothing will happen", or "never had an accident so I don't need a belt" -- all of these are just excuses and indicate plain stupidity or a very poor safety attitude.

Remember, YOU are the ONLY ONE to make the decision whether you do or don't buckle up. On or off the job, start the new year by making every trip a safe one by buckling up, and insisting that all passengers in your vehicle do the same. Who knows, the life you save may be your own!

IT'S A PROVEN FACT - SEAT BELTS SAVE LIVES - BUCKLE UP!

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