I’ve always been a sucker for long drives. Growing up, family road trips with cousins were a must. We’d play games, eat and sing aloud. And the one thing that we always kept in mind before heading out for our road trips was to click our seatbelts, especially the ones in the back of the car. It's very important to buckle up, people!
I recently stumbled upon a video of Abish Mathew where he is seen hitting the streets, and being his hilarious self, quizzing people about their take on wearing rear seat belts. Much to my surprise and consternation, people had no idea about rear seat belts! I mean how hard is it to understand that unbuckled passengers can become projectiles during an accident, resulting in injuries and fatalities. Think of it, most cars don't have airbags for the rear seats and most people are more casual while sitting in the rear. A simple click on the rear seat belt could help cut down all that misadventures.
Even though we are all aware of the road safety rules, we often tend to ignore them and take life for granted. Many of us feel constricted even when we put on the front seat belts, let alone rear seat belts.
To spread awareness around the need to buckle up even in the rear seat while driving, Nissan India kicked off 2019 with the launch of its campaign #HaveYouClickedToday. No, it is not a selfie campaign, people! It's about the ‘click’ sound of the rear seat belt when you buckle up! Nissan collaborated with SaveLIFE Foundation to commission a survey to help raise awareness about the importance of wearing rear seat belts… And the excuses India came up with for not wearing seatbelts are as bizarre as it gets. While rear seat belts reduce the risk of death by 25% and fatal injuries by 75%, according to the survey, 22% Indians choose to not buckle up in the rear seats due to discomfort and the risk of ruining their clothes!
But this excuse can be thrown out of the window, for now, thanks to Nissan and ace designer Kunal Rawal. A near-fatal accident when he was in the car with actress Sonam Kapoor a few years ago helped him appreciate his miraculous save and the need to be safe than sorry. To inspire people to wear seatbelts both in the front seat as well as the rear, Rawal in collaboration with Nissan has designed a shirt that does not crumble when you click your seat belts- a path-breaking creation, acting as a catalyst for better seat belts usage. The Nissan SBS was revealed during the National Road Safety Week (Feb 4-10) and has already become quite a thing on social media.
Nissan India has also partnered with School Health Annual Report Programme (SHARP) NGO to kickstart a pan-India school outreach program under its #HaveYouClickedToday campaign. The initiative will cover 2 lakh students in 240 schools across 12 cities over the next two months, working to nationally spread awareness about road safety and rear seat belt usage. Now that's something amazing. Kudos to the team on this initiative!
It’s better to be safe than sorry. This truism, however cliched it may sound, holds good for everything we do in our daily lives – eat, drink, work, play, and definitely while we drive. Why allow things to come to a head before taking any action? Let’s toss those lame excuses by the wayside and buckle up before stepping on the gas.