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Improved safety urged for rear-seat passengers

As the summer season approaches, more Missouri drivers will start taking to the road. With the growing traffic, these motorists will also face a higher risk of getting in a car crash. The Governors Highway Safety Association is focusing particularly on the dangers faced by rear-seat passengers. Many backseat riders who use ride-hailing services like Uber or Lyft are less likely to wear seat belts.

Some of the most effective vehicle safety devices, like automatically restricting seat belts or airbags, are primarily found in the front seats. There are a number of design reasons for this, but it means that wearing a seat belt is especially important to protect rear-seat passengers in case of a collision. Safety advocates are trying to encourage ride-share users to remember to buckle up.

In addition, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is urging automakers to do more to make rear-seat passengers safer. Car safety technologies have dramatically improved in recent decades. In many ways, vehicles are now safer than they have ever been in the past. However, backseat safety is often neglected. IIHS researchers examined 117 crashes in which rear-seat passengers wearing their seat belts were severely injured or killed. They said that car manufacturers should do more to improve safety technologies that can protect passengers' chests and heads.

In most cases, these motor vehicle collisions are entirely preventable, caused by negligent or dangerous driving. An individual who has been hurt in a car accident caused by someone else could work with a personal injury attorney to seek compensation for all crash-related damages.

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