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5 killed after minivan crashes on Nara bridge

31 Comments

Three men and two women, all aged 19, were killed after the minivan they were traveling in flipped over and slammed into the railing of a bridge in Asuka, Nara Prefecture, early Thursday.

The accident occurred at around 12:20 a.m. Fuji TV reported that a police patrol car discovered the minivan which was completely destroyed.

Police said it appeared the van had been speeding when it flipped over and slid for dozens of meters before eventually making impact with the bridge's guardrail.

The driver and four passengers were thrown from the van. Four were declared dead at the scene and the fifth was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital.

Police say that the road leading up to the bridge curved slightly.

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31 Comments
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What's with the aversion to seatbelts?

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Its funny, but everybody here seems to believe backseat passengers dont need seatbelts. Even those sitting in the superman seat (the middle of the back seat, who will do a superman impersonation in the case of a headon collision).

Not sure why the driver/front passenger werent wearing them, but they probably had the same idea "I'm in a car, nothing can hurt me now"

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Obviously no seatbelts. They oiled have all survived. Rip.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Stop assuming that their deaths were due to no seatbelts. Please read the news article again.

Police said it appeared the car had flipped over and slid for dozens of meters before eventually making impact with the bridge’s guardrail.

The car flipped over before impacting the bridge's guardrail. The flipping over itself would have caused serious traumatic brain injuries, perhaps even diffuse axonal injuries. The final impact with the bridge's guardrail would have caused further brain contusions/diffuse axonal injuries... leading to death. Seatbelts don't prevent these types of things when the scale of the accident is this large.

-11 ( +6 / -17 )

serious traumatic brain injuries, perhaps even diffuse axonal injuries.

Ain't nobody got time for that.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Stop assuming that their deaths were due to no seatbelts

Most observed that they were all thrown from the car, hence no seatbelts.

Buckling up is fundamental to acknowledging the dangers of the road, and respecting your friends' safety. Where this step is absent, awareness of the risks of speed and poor visibility, or that your narrow, mini SUV will handle differently with a full load, cannot be assumed.

Perhaps not wearing seatbelts did (indirectly) kill them after all?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Been in a car that flipped a few times and slammed on a back. Seatbelts kept us in the car and saved our lives. Yes we had minor injuries, but we all survived (3 of us).

10 ( +11 / -1 )

The flipping over itself would have caused serious traumatic brain injuries, perhaps even diffuse axonal injuries.

Not would but could have happened, and it surely seems that being tossed from the car proves no seat belts.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@SenseNotSoCommonAug.

What's with the aversion to seatbelts?

Just like when you see people ridding scooters with a helmet on but the strap unfastened.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@Kobe

Or strapped... onto the back of their necks. Faster that way - less drag.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Horrible! And yes, it is possible to be thrown while wearing a seatbelt. Prayers for all the families.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Watch the video posted in the above link. The vehicle rolled over and crashed at high speed; nothing would have saved them.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Yep, not only were they not wearing seatbelts, but judging by the destruction, they were driving WAY too fast.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

No seat belts and minivan only hold four passengers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Seatbelts people! Wear them!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

THe fact that wearing seat belts isn`t considered common sense here just boggles my mind. It particularly angers me when I see (as I often do) young children climbing around in cars completely un-belted. Those are just tragedies waiting to happen.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Yesterday I saw. Mom sitting in the front of the car with a baby in her lap. If that wasn't bad enough needless t say neither were belted in. I wanted to give the mother a good shake. Any accident and the baby would be ded, and it'd be her fault 100%. Police need to get serious abut enforcing this.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

There is NO way that excessive speed was not a significant factor in that crash.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

sad it happened. rest in peace.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Takuma

This is the Toyota Cami with a 1.3 liter engine and a 500 license plate so five passengers and five seat belts.

Speed was probably extreme considering the damage to the car and while it is possible for someone to be thrown out of a car if they are wearing seat belts, common sense dictates that you wear them.

I had a twenty something in my car last year who said she didn't wear her seat belt, ever... She was frustrated when I stayed in the parking lot until she had buckled up.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Considering the car slid on it's roof for apparently dozens of meters, I'd say that not wearing a seatbelt was the least of the driving errors the occupants made. Seriously, someone with an engineering background should check, just how fast do you have to be going to slide 15-20 meters on the roof of a car?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I had a twenty something in my car last year who said she didn't wear her seat belt, ever... She was frustrated when I stayed in the parking lot until she had buckled up.

Some of my son's little friends hate me for that.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

But they'll thank you for it later Sense, maybe... Well probably not but you know what I mean.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Since Toyota Cami is higher off the ground than cars, it is definitely more likely to roll over. Problem with this SUV is that it has a short wheelbase. If you had full five people in the car, SUV would've been top heavy, and if there was sudden curve, more force of the weight would've transferred to the opposite side, causing to roll over. On this SUV, you really have slow down on the curve roads.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

There are quite strong winds on those bridges, so please take care and dont speed!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@ PeaceWarrior the article says its was a minivan, a Toyota Cami is a crossover. They should fix the article. Yes, lots of lack of CS here, even more down here on Okinawa. Kids with car seats or seat belts, etc.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

this would be tragic news anywhere in the world, but for a country like Japan that needs all the young people it can get ...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

a police patrol car discovered the minivan which was completely destroyed

Wearing a seat belts can save lives. But since in this case the car was completely destroyed, it is unlikely that any if the passengers would have survived being inside the car either.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Ive just looked at crazy joes link, the mini van has almost disintegrated, so having any seat belt on, probably in this case didn't help.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

a police patrol car discovered the minivan which was completely destroyed

Sounds like even if they were wearing seatbelts they wouldn't have survived.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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