On a sunny day in August, 22-year-old Bethany Benson and her boyfriend were on the way home from visiting a relative. Enjoying the sunshine, and relaxing with her feet on the dash, Bethany had no idea that one small, seemingly insignificant decision would change her life forever.
According to Driving.ca, prior to this, Bethany was a flourishing college student attending Trent University, majoring in French, history, and education, following her dream to become a teacher. She doesn’t remember the accident, but wants to share her story to educate people who may not understand the dangers of her actions. Her tragic mistake? She laid back, and put her feet on the dashboard.
Bethany was in the passenger seat of her Pontiac Sunfire, stretched out and settled in for the road trip, when a chain-reaction car accident in front of them caused her boyfriend to slam on his breaks. A motorcyclist and small car had collided, creating a small pileup, unfortunately leading to their car hitting the tractor trailer in front of them.
It’s a miracle they both survived the accident. Her boyfriend received 100 stitches, but Bethany endured far worse. The passenger side airbag deployed at 320 mph, roughly the speed of a Formula One race car. The airbag hit Bethany’s hamstrings, launching her knees into her eyes, breaking her eye socket, cheek bone, and nose. Her jaw was dislocated, and she ended up losing her spleen.
Both of her feet were broken and compressed, leaving them two sizes smaller than before the accident. Her left eye was permanently dilated, affecting her vision, and her hearing was altered. She also got a complete reboot to her brain, due to a brain bleed.
Though Bethany has no memory of the crash, she relives it everyday. She takes 20 pills daily to manage pain, wears special shoes and orthopedic inserts. She has lost friends, boyfriends, and activities that she once loved due to the crash.
Over the last four years, Bethany’s life was turned upside down. Through it all though, she is pressing on, as an advocate for seat belt and airbag safety.
She made a mistake we have all probably made, and is now paying the price every single day. Please SHARE her message, and spread the word about proper car safety.