It is the law in many countries around the world that one must wear a seat belt when driving or riding in a car. This is to protect you from being propelled from your car during an accident. It also prevents people from moving around unnecessarily. Whilst this is the law for cars many forms of public transport do not require the occupants to wear seat belts. One of the most obvious forms of transport that don’t often have seat belts fitted is a bus. Continue reading if you want to know why buses don’t have seat belts.
Why Don’t Buses Have Seat belts?
One of the reasons that buses do not have seat belts is because of their size. Buses are much larger than cars and therefore tend to experience less severe conditions when involved in vehicle accidents. The passengers also experience less of an impact from a crash in a bus. Buses are built in such as way that they have other passive safety features that protect passengers. They have features such as high backed seats, energy absorbing materials and strong seat anchors to protect passengers from being propelled during a collision. Passengers are seated in compartments that are very close together making it less likely to be propelled very far during an accident.
Studies done on bus accidents have shown that installation of seat belts in buses would not have changed the outcome of the injuries and fatalities in the accidents. Providing seat belts in buses may also be detrimental to the safely of passengers. One reason for this is that the common seat belts placed in buses are lap sashes. These would need to be adjusted for every new passenger. Many people would either not wear the seat belt or wear it unadjusted. An incorrectly fitted seat belt can cause more damage than not wearing seat belt at all. When three point seat belts are installed in buses it limits seating, because only two passengers can sit in any one compartment. This results in more people standing. Standing in a bus is much more dangerous than riding without a seat belt. Seat belts may also limit the ability for people to leave a bus quickly in the case of an emergency, resulting in injury that may not have occurred without the seat belt.
In some countries small buses are required to have seat belts installed and this is because of their size and their limited capacity. Some countries have also made it law to have seat belts in buses that carry children, as they are small enough to slide under seats.