Why do car seat belts have shoulder protection but airplanes don't?

If the seat belt has shoulder protection, the safety of passengers will be significantly increased, but…

According to a report from the US Federal Aviation Administration, each year an average of 58 passengers are injured due to not wearing seat belts.

In addition, out of 298 serious injuries caused by aircraft shaking (statistics from 1980 to 2008), there are 184 cases where the people involved are flight attendants who have to travel on the plane to serve passengers. .

Why do car seat belts have shoulder protection but airplanes don't?
Flight attendants often get injured because they often have to travel on planes.

Most accidents happen at altitudes above 9,000m, that is, during flight, not during take-off and landing. Therefore, it is best to wear a full strap for the whole trip, even if it is a bit inconvenient.

But specifically, how do seat belts help you?

Richard McSpadden from the AOPA Institute for Aviation Safety said: “Many passengers think that plane crashes are rare. I agree with them. However, if they are unlucky, the consequences are terrifying, even when the aircraft only turbulence for a short time”.

Why do car seat belts have shoulder protection but airplanes don't?
The scene of chaos when the plane shook at 9,000m, on an Aeroflot flight from Bangkok in November 2017.

An American book author and flight attendant – Heather Poole also agrees with this view. Poole said: “People often think when shaking, the plane will be pulled up. In fact, the plane will come down sharply and suddenly.

Then, if you fasten your seat belt, it will keep you in the seat. Your position relative to the plane remains the same and so there is less risk of injury . On the contrary, if you are relaxing with your whole body, you can be thrown up and hit your head on the ceiling of the plane, causing dangerous injuries.”

Passengers in yellow shirts are not wearing seat belts. People in blue are protected by seat belts.

In 2013, Asiana Airlines Flight 214 crashed while landing in San Francisco, killing three people.

David King later said: “Among them, two passengers were thrown from the plane because they did not wear seat belts when the plane landed (and crashed). They were most likely kept. stay in the cabin and survive if you fasten your seat belt.”

Why do car seat belts have shoulder protection but airplanes don't?
The accident scene of Asiana Airlines flight 214.

If so, wouldn’t adding shoulder protection make it even safer?

Exactly like that. “It helps to prevent the movement of the upper body when the plane is hit by a strong shock,” explains McSpadden.

In fact, in small aircraft, shoulder protection is a mandatory requirement, according to flight safety regulations from December 1986. Along with the hip sling, the shoulder strap can reduce the risk of serious injury by 88% and the risk of death by 20% (according to the US Federal Aviation Administration).

If it’s so magical, why don’t people design more shoulder straps on airplanes like on cars?

Why do car seat belts have shoulder protection but airplanes don't?
This is safer but a bit inconvenient.

Because of its high cost and lack of design and installation options, it is both effective and convenient for large commercial flights. It will obviously cause inconvenience to passengers during long flights.

Moreover, the flight safety index is at a high level, so it is not necessary to install additional shoulder belts.

In 2017, there were no fatal crashes for a commercial jet – making it the safest year for a large commercial jet.

As for all aircraft types, the fatality rate in 2017 is also low: 1 incident per 12 million flights!

At such a rate, people do not want to install seat belts to protect their shoulders because the cost and effort are not large enough to offset the complaints and objections that will inevitably occur from the majority of passengers.

Anyhow, there is a belt around the waist. They are extremely useful, so if you want to protect yourself at the highest level, you should be hard to “stick” with it throughout the flight.