Not many people can argue the fact that seatbelts save lives. Despite this fact, in 2017, the national seatbelt use rate was 89.6%. This is an 11% increase from 2014, which is a sign that seatbelt use is headed in the right direction. Additionally, in 2017, 2,549 additional lives could have been saved in fatal accidents if people had only been wearing a seatbelt. Of those killed in fatal accidents in 2017, an eye-opening 47% were not wearing seatbelts. Studies show that seatbelt use can reduce a person’s risk of fatal injury by 45% and moderate-to-critical injury by 50%.
The Pensacola News Journal reports that a serious accident believed to have been caused by alcohol closed the Pensacola Bay Bridge in both directions.
The crash happened on Sunday afternoon at about 3:30 p.m. It closed the Pensacola Bay Bridge in both directions for about two hours.
Police say that 29-year-old Kristavia Johnson was driving northbound on the bridge in a beige Nissan Altima. She was in the left lane and traveling at a high rate of speed. She struck an orange marking cone, then swerved to the right and hit an outer retaining wall. Her vehicle then crossed into oncoming traffic, where it slammed head-on into a white Lincoln Navigator.
The people inside the Nissan were not wearing seatbelts. They suffered from serious injuries and were rushed to a local hospital. Additionally, there were two young children in the Nissan who were not restrained.
The driver of the Lincoln, Miranda Casmiro, 46, and the passengers in her vehicle were all wearing seatbelts. They suffered from minor injuries and were transported to the hospital.