By Ashley Rader
Elizabethton High School students are still fighting the Battle of the Belt by bringing in a rollover crash simulator to demonstrate what happens during a traffic accident when no seatbelts are worn.
The Battle of the Belt is a statewide contest by the Tennessee Highway Patrol to raise seatbelt awareness in high schools.
Tennessee Highway Patrol Lt. Rick Garrison brought the rollover simulator, which features a pickup truck with a rotating cab, to demonstrate to students what happens to passengers in vehicles if they are in a rollover accident and are not buckled up.
During the simulation, a dummy was placed in the driver’s seat of the truck. The simulator was turned on and the cab started to spin. After just one or two revolutions, the dummy was partially ejected and then completely thrown from the cab of the truck.
“In traffic accidents, 50 to 60 percent of all fatalities were not wearing their seatbelts,” Garrison said. “You’ve been told since you were 1 year old, maybe younger, that you need to wear your seatbelt. Now, you know why.”