/The Car Seat Belts Through The History

The Car Seat Belts Through The History

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The idea of using seat belts

The history of the car seat belts starts from the Claire L. Straith, American plastic surgeon who was worried about car safety. In the 1930s, together with the physician C. J. Strickland, they coined the idea of using seat belts as well as padded dashboards. They claimed that the dashboards and steering wheels cause most injuries.

When the car hits something, the driver is hitting the hard steering wheel first. As some historical paper writings inform, the leading engineers of those days had a task – to create a steering wheel that would bend or fold in a crash. Moreover, they were supposed to take away all the sharps objects from the cabin and to design safe leavers and switches. In 1949, the American car Trucker Torpedo was the first to use padded dashboards.

A little later, some car manufacturers analyzed the safety conditions and the financial component of using seat belts and started to use them to restrain the drivers. The earliest seat belts were invented in the 19th century but the aircraft did not use them until the 1930s. In the early 1950s, when the automotive seat belts started to save numbers of lives, the laws about them became actual.

seatbelts at The Car Seat Belts Through The History

Three-point seat belts as a new milestone

Nils Bohlin, the inventor from Swede who worked for Volvo, devised the first three-point seat belt in 1959. He found out that during the car crash it is important to restrain both lower and upper part of the driver’s body. It was extremely challenging to create a simple and reliable solution to let people fasten such seat belt with one hand. Furthermore, they faced one more problem – no one wanted to be a volunteer to test the new seat belts at a high speed. The reason for that was that engineers who tested it at a lower speed felt the pain when being restricted by seat belts. If the research paper writings say the truth, the experiments were conducted with the human corpses donated to science. Luckily, the team of engineers and scientists managed to create reliable, effective and easy to use safety belts. They became essential parts of all Volvo’s cars.

The new challenge was to persuade people all over the world that such seat belts are really helpful and safe. It took more than a dozen years of demonstrating all the data and advantages of using three-point seat belts in the world tour before governments and public finally were convinced. Bohlin’s invention was recognized as a highly important and the German Patent Office added it to the list of the eight patents that had a tremendous effect on the whole mankind.

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13 May 2007 — Car driver starting car / ignition key, seat belt — Image by © Rudolf/Corbis

Twenty-five years after, the UK government enforced the mandatory seat laws that required using seat belts in all cars. That was the beginning of a new age of car industry, which is thoroughly observed by car occupants, researchers, writing services like yourwriters, and different institutions all over the world.

Nowadays, almost all cars have seat belts for the passengers as well as for the drivers. Moreover, it is obligatory to use baby car seats, as children cannot be buckled up with the standard seat belts. Even if the seat belts the children and we use these days are user-friendly and reliable, the lead engineers all over the world are working on to improve them to keep pace with ours, and children’s car seat history that repeatedly changes. Seat belts are the most important devices to save thousands of lives every year. That is why it is so important to raise people awareness about advantages of using seat belts through ads, essay writing, books, and learning videos.

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(Journalist) – Jorge is a Portuguese tech auto journalist and is responsible for our gadgets section. He joined our team in September 2009.