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US Supreme Court sent back a lawsuit against Ford to a lower court for review. According to the WSJ, the person killed was not wearing a seat belt, was thrown through the driver's side window as the pickup rolled several times, and was killed. The plaintiff contends that Ford is liable because it chose to install glass that was more easily broken than an alternative (both types were available and regulations left the decision up to the company).

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405274870461550457617...

From my high school days, when I chose wearing seat belts as my topic for a speech class assignment, I've felt that those who don't wear seat belts, to put it bluntly, deserve what happens to them in a crash. Wearing a seat belt is the single most important factor in surviving a crash. I have never let anyone ride in a car I was driving without them putting on their seat belt.

Driving, despite all the advances in technology over the decades, is not a safe activity. Not when people are moving 1000 pounds or more of metal and plastic around roads at 88 feet per second or higher (that's 60+ mph), holding onto the pavement through (usually) four relatively small surface area contacts.

At some point, people have to accept responsibility for their own decisions.

Cheers,
Jim
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Not wearing a seatbelt in injury claims is certainly a mitigating factor. Although I feel similarly as you do about people who do not wear them, I still feel this has some merit. SOME, because the question brought up should be answered, but in any scenario I am sure Ford will prevail in this specific case for that "disregard of prudent safety precautions".

I haven't read the case, but just from the WSJ article it also hints that it was a single vehicle loss due to the drivers own negligence as well. Horrible for the family that had this happen in 2002, but I can't help but hope Ford prevails in this case (at least with what limited info I've seen so far without reading the entire arguments of the case)

- Shaun (owns F)
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I'm not actually as hard nosed as I sounded in the original post. However, I was taught to accept responsibility when my own actions caused me pain. (Lots of lessons, heh!)

Given that the truck was rolling and the driver went through the driver's window, which involves quite a bit of contortion, it seems to me quite possible that he would still have been killed from all the banging around his body would have suffered had he remained inside the cab with an intact window. Lots of dangerous things inside the cab, too, that can batter or impale a flailing body.

Jim
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I agree with you on this one Jim. If Ford was in the wrong regarding the material used to construct the windshield, I think it atleast owes the family an explanation. I would not go as far to say Ford should pay anything in compensation for the death due to the fact the driver was not wearing a seatbelt. Seatbelts are there for a reason and they do save lives. I try to think about everything in a risk/reward sort of way. If I do not wear my seatbelt, what benefit am I getting? Not much, maybe a wrinkle or two less on my shirt, but I risk losing my life. Not a very good handoff in my mind.

Kyle
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