When was the last time you wore a seatbelt in the backseat of a New York City cab?
That’s not a rhetorical question — we really want to know. If you’re like us, you literally have no idea. Also like us, for many New Yorkers, it’s very possible that the answer to that question is “never.”
We don’t not do it because of some macho belief that we’re invincible, we don’t buckle up for a number of reasons — namely laziness, preoccupation, and our misguided trust that just because the driver’s picture is behind his seat, he knows what the hell he’s doing.
Leave it to the New York Daily News to rain on our unbuckled parade — reporter Heidi Evans used the front page of yesterday’s edition to tell taxicab horror stories about face-altering injuries caused by people’s failure to buckle up.
Take the case of Jane Lee, for example, who Evans writes “learned her lesson the hard way.”
From Evans’ story:
“Our driver ran a red light, and the next thing I knew, he crashed into another cab making a left,” said Lee, 29, who was on her way to a late dinner after leaving work with a friend.
The 5-foot-2 Lee was thrown forward on impact and smashed into the taxi’s hard plastic partition. The result: a broken nose, deep lacerations to her face and a cut eyelid.
“My face was completely busted open,” she said.
“When the policeman saw me at the hospital, his reaction was, ‘Holy crap!’ It was pretty bad.”
See photos of Lee’s face after it was mangled in the wreck here.
Apparently, Lee’s not alone — an emergency room doctor at Bellevue Hospital told the paper there “isn’t a week that goes by that we don’t see at least two patients with these terrible injuries” caused when their faces smash into the plastic partition in a cab.
We haven’t been in a cab since reading Evans’ article, but decided that we’ll be buckling up the next time we jump in the backseat of a taxi (if we remember, of course — which we won’t).
Unfortunately, we’re pretty sure our new-found fondness of backseat seatbelts will fade, and without Lee’s face as a daily reminder, we’ll again put our mug at risk of colliding with the hard, plastic partition.
What about you? Has the New York Daily News scared you into wearing a seatbelt in a cab, or does buckling up in the backseat remain low on your list of things to worry about?