A seatbelt designed to make car journeys safer and more comfortable for women was revealed today. Automotive engineers MIRA have collaborated with women’s car insurers Sheila’s Wheels to design a new “S-Clip” device that prevents the belt strap causing discomfort across the chest and aims to get more female drivers buckling up.
A poll of 534 women revealed that 92% admit to tampering with or not wearing their seatbelt due to the discomfort it causes whilst driving. One in five women complained of discomfort across the chest when they were buckled-up, especially those with larger breasts.
Adjustments to counter the discomfort can potentially endanger the lives of female motorists. Almost a quarter (23%) reduce the effectiveness of their seatbelt by slipping it under their arm whilst driving and more than one in eight (14%) have failed to buckle-up at all.
The new S-Clip changes the route of the belt to take it down the middle of the chest directly between the cleavage instead of cutting across the breasts. This adjustment minimises flattening of the chest and rubbing on the neck.
It has been subjected to crash test dummy sled tests to ensure that neither the clip, nor the desired re-routing of the diagonal belt strap, impedes the effectiveness of the actual seatbelt or increases the likelihood of injury in the event of an accident.