Types of Seat Belts

Wearing your Seat Belt is always something important. Here in California, you can either click it or you can get a ticket for not clicking it; the whole thing is called “Click it or Ticket”. So, if you decide on coming to California .. just wear your Seat Belts - unless you want to help us with our economy.

The Seat Belt is a safety harness that was initially designed to secure the people in the vehicle against any movement that can be harmful. This movement may result from any kind of collision or just a sudden stop. The Car Seat Belt is part of an overall passive safety system; the main purpose of the Seat Belt is to reduce any type of injury by stopping the person wearing the Seat Belt from hitting hard things in the car.

The Car Seat Belt even absorbs energy by stretching during any type of deceleration. This means that there is less speed differential between the person wearing the Seat Belt and the inside of the vehicle.

There are different types of Seat Belts :

1. Lap - This is just the belt that goes over the waist. You can find these belts in older model cars, rear middle seats, and even airplanes .. if you’ve been on a plane before. You can even find these belts in some coaches.

2. Sash - This is the Seat Belt that goes over the shoulder. These were the belts that were used in the 1960s; the only thing with these is that since it was only over the shoulder, they were really easy to slip out of in a collision.

3. Three Point - These are the ones that are in most cars; actually all cars that are manufactured today. The first three-point belt was introduced by Volvo in 1959. They had it installed on their Volvo PV 544. Until about the 1980s, only the front two seats had the three-point belts; the rear seats had the lap belts and the two-point belts.

4. Belt In Seat (BIS) - This is a basic three-point belt where the shoulder part of the belt is attached to the backrest. The first car that had this was the ‘90 Mercedes SL Class. This type of Seat Belt is known to be safer if you ever end up in a collision where you roll over - especially if you have kids between 4-8.

5. Five Point Harness - This type of Seat Belt is safer, but you’re a lot more restricted when compared to the belts mentioned above. These belts are usually found in safety seats for kids and in racecars. Fun fact : Racecar spelled backwards is still racecar. This is how it works: the lap part is connected to a belt that’s located between the legs; then there’s two shoulder belts. This means there’s a total of five points of attachment to the seat.

6. Six Point Harness - This is pretty much the same as the five-point seat belt, just that this six point one has an extra belt between the legs. These belts are usually used in racing.

7. Seven Point Harness (5+2) - This is the harness that’s pretty confusing. It’s a mix of the five-point harness with a redundant lap-belt that’s attached to the airframe.

So as you can obviously tell, there is more than one type of Seat Belt. Sure the one that we use in our cars is the most common, but I honestly had no idea that there were about seven different belts. Did you?