The 3-Point Seat belt Turns 50

The 3-point seat belt was first introduced on the 13th of August 1959. In the fifty years since, the invention has been a huge success and saved well over a million lives. All cars today come equipped with a three point seat belt.

The three point seat belt was invented by an engineer named Nils Bohlin, who was looking for a better way of keeping passengers secure during a collision. Although two point belts across the lap were available in some cars, they did not prove to be very effective, especially at high speeds. Thus, Bohlin together with Volvo went to work and their result was the three point seat belt. Volvo then patented the three point belt design as an open patent. This allowed everyone to develop and include the three point seat belt in their cars, making driving safer for everyone. The invention of the three point safety belt puts Bohlin on par with patent holders such as Benz, Edison and Diesel.

The three point seat belt has been named as one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century. The German patent registrars have also stated that it is one of the eight patents to have the greatest significance to humanity during the hundred years leading up to 1985. This also means that the three point safety belt is the single most important safety device in the 120 years of automobile history.

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