Chinese authorities are aghast at the recent popularity of “seatbelt shirts,” innovative articles of clothing which allow China’s drivers to circumvent the incredibly onerous requirement that they wear seatbelts whilst driving.
The shirts are said to be increasingly popular both due to their effectiveness at fooling police and their (to Chinese eyes at least) near fashionability, with the expected flood of copycat products only adding to their spread.
None too surprisingly, the shirts are apparently a response to efforts to crackdown on drivers refusing to wear seatbelts – actually wearing them being quite out of the question for many.
According to Chinese statistics, 90% of China’s do not consider wearing a seatbelt an essential practice, and this is suspected to be the third most significant factor behind the nation’s increasingly abysmal road safety record, behind only speeding and drink driving.
The authorities have responded with exasperation, pointing out that “accidents where drivers do not wear seatbelts are 5 times more likely to result in death; you have only one life and should take it seriously.”