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Pickup trucks are incredibly popular and tend to dominate the roadways. That doesn’t mean that they’re perfect, though. While different trucks vary in their safety ratings, there is one universal complaint about them that the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) says needs to be addressed – seat belt reminders. Here’s what the IIHS said about 2022 pickup trucks failing the seat belt reminder test, and why it’s so important.

2022 Chevy Silverado
2022 Chevy Silverado 1500 | GM

Everyone knows that seat belts are an important part of safety, but that doesn’t mean that everyone wears them. There are a variety of reasons why people don’t buckle up, including misjudging their effectiveness, being unable or unwilling to comply, or simply forgetting. That’s why seat belt reminders are so important. While they can remind you to buckle up, they can also help drivers know if their passenger hasn’t fastened their seat belt.

Yet not every new pickup truck does a good job of issuing these oh-so-important reminders. The IIHS says that most new popular pickup trucks failed its seat belt reminder test, and that’s a huge problem. Without effective reminders, it’s harder to keep people safe.

Only 1 pickup truck earned a good rating

The IIHS tested ten pickup trucks to gauge how effective their seat belt reminders were. Unfortunately, only one pickup truck earned a good rating. That was the 2022 Toyota Tundra crew cab. That just may make the Tundra more attractive to those who are focused on truck safety.

To get that good rating, the Toyota Tundra had to make an “audible signal and visual alert on the dashboard display, overhead panel or center console when the vehicle is moving at least 6 mph and the system detects an unbelted occupant in the driver or passenger seat or the unfastening of a second-row belt that was previously buckled.”

5 pickup trucks earned a poor rating

On the other end of the spectrum, five pickup trucks earned a poor rating for their seat belt reminders. That’s bad news in the event of a car accident because “Nearly a third of pickup occupant deaths in 2020 occurred in rollover crashes, in which seat belt use plays a key role because of the risk of ejection.”

It’s important that pickup trucks have these seat belt warnings in part because people who are in pickup trucks tend to not wear seat belts. The president of the IIHS, David Harkey, says “National belt use observations show that people driving or riding in pickups are less likely to buckle up than occupants of other vehicles, so effective reminders are especially important for these vehicles.”

Everyone wants vehicles to be safer, and it’s organizations like the IIHS that point out where they aren’t. In order to make sure that you’re as safe as possible when in your pickup truck (or any vehicle), wearing a seat belt is paramount. And because it isn’t always the case that people in trucks will put on their seatbelts, effective seat belt reminders are so important.


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