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Teen Refuses To Give Friends Late Night Ride Home After They Won’t Fasten Their Seat Belts

Person buckling their seatbelt
Sait Aydin/Getty Images

There are a lot of people in the world who believe that while bad things do happen, they likely will not happen to them.

Car accidents and actually needing a seatbelt are high up on that list of impossibilities, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor Flaky_Camp_706 was a new driver, with some of his friends still not driving yet, and he was happy to provide them with rides as long as they wore a seatbelt.

When his friends refused to accept a ride from him because of this rule and opted to walk home instead, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he was wrong to insist.

He asked the sub:

“AITA For Not Giving My Friends A Ride If They Didn’t Fasten Their Seat Belts?”

The OP offered to give a few friends a ride home after work.

“Last night, I (18 Male) was getting off work at 11:30 PM. My two other friends (both 18 Male) were also leaving as well and asked me if they could get a ride.”

“One of them doesn’t drive yet, and the other one drives but holds his phone in the car; I haven’t ridden in the car with him yet and don’t think I will anytime soon.”

“Anyway, I said sure. They all live within one and a half miles from our workplace (a three to five minute drive or a 15 to 20 minute walk), and they both live in separate houses at different ends of town.”

“It was a pretty chilly night at about 40 degrees and only a few cars were out and about.”

The OP just had one request for his passengers.

“We all packed into my light blue 2004 Buick LeSabre. I waited to hear all of their seatbelts click, which never came.”

“I asked if they could fasten their seatbelts and they looked at each other with confused glances.”

“After a solid minute, one of them broke the silence and asked, ‘Wait, you’re serious?’ and which, I said, ‘Yeah?'”

The OP’s friends decided that was too much to ask.

“They asked why and I said the obvious reasons: safety and I don’t want no tickets if we happen to get pulled over.”

“One chimed in, correcting me, saying, ‘The driver doesn’t get a ticket, the passenger does.'”

“I sat there for a second and said, ‘If you don’t fasten your seatbelts, I’m not taking you guys anywhere.'”

“They both let out a bunch of scoffs and exited the car.”

“I said, ‘Suit yourself,’ and drove off, leaving them in chilly weather, on a dark night, with a 20-minute walk home.”


Fellow Redditors weighed in:

  • NTA: Not the A**hole
  • YTA: You’re the A**hole
  • ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
  • NAH: No A**holes Here

Some reassured the OP that he had done the right thing by refusing rides to his friends.

“NTA, I wish I could give you a prize for being one of the most responsible 18-year-olds I’ve come across for a long time (and I teach Year 12 students).” – Humble_Scarcity1195

“As a mother who has always had the ‘I won’t move this car until everyone is buckled in’ slogan, I appreciate you doing that!”

“Also, as an ER worker, you may have saved their lives.”

“Good job, OP. Don’t ever stop having that rule in your car!” – Little-Hedgehog-4590

“Good on you, OP. NTA. Don’t let anyone pressure you into a potentially dangerous situation. Car accidents can come out of nowhere. I’ve been hit two times, didn’t see them coming either time, and if I hadn’t been wearing a seat belt, it would have been a lot worse than it was.”

“My brother was in a car accident where he wasn’t wearing a seat belt. He got ejected from the car and watched it flip over him in the air. He was extremely lucky not to be killed. It’s not worth the risk.” – Aeronautics_4

“NTA. Big time. Look at Princess Diana’s crash. There were four people in the car. One was wearing a seatbelt. He survived.” – TheZZ9

“NTA. Not at all. First, shout out because my family had a light blue lesabre for a hot minute. But it was like a ‘94.”

“Also, you are responsible for your passengers. Where I live, the driver gets a ticket. And if they were to fly through the window, you’d have to live with that.” – RutilatedGold

“NTA and also a respectable human. I hope my son has friends like you when he grows up.” – heatherriffic

“NTA. If I wasn’t strict on that rule when I was 16, I would’ve killed three people. Everyone walked away fine instead. You made the right move. Good job.” – burn76541932

“I always use my seatbelt for safety reasons; everyone should. But, that’s beside the point. You are doing them a favor and they put themselves in your charge. You asked them to do something for you that is completely reasonable. They should have just done it.”

“You may have felt like an a-hole because that was their intention. They are immature and confuse being rude and careless with being cool.”

“Stick to your guns. You did right.” – Capra555

“NTA. And you’re a bloody legend. I lost my brother in a motorbike accident when he was 19, and I was 13. I wish more young people would think like this.” – Limp-Comedian-7470

Others agreed and felt the OP’s friends were fixating on the wrong things.

“NTA. Your friends are immature losers who think it’s cool not to wear a seatbelt. It’s shocking that people actually think this way, but they do. You’re not the problem, they are.” – Revolutionary_Okra28

“NTA, how weird that they got their underwear in a twist over something so basic, so easy, and it doesn’t cost them anything. These guys aren’t worth your energy.” – montycrates

“NTA, and you’ve just worked out your ‘friends’ are total f**king mor*ns.”

“In an accident, not only will they kill themselves going through the windshield, but they could also kill you. It’s not about the ticket.” – alsotheabyss

“I once had a friend try that on me. I said, ‘Your choice, but you should know that one of the challenges in older cars (it was 73 Plymouth Duster …and Plymouth was ESPECIALLY known for this) is that the breaks tend to fail with no notice. No squeak warning, you just press the pedal and it goes to the floor. You basically just have to kill the engine and coast to a stop.'”

“He buckled up.” – Mistress_D**ned

“They’re 18. They’re definitely old enough to be aware of and responsible for themselves as human beings. But they may still be on the cusp of realizing that they are the grown-ups now and actually have to actively keep themselves alive. You did the right thing.” – MaritMonkey

“OP, people have been killed by other passengers flying bodies who were un-belted. It affects the safety of everyone in the car. I don’t drive anyone who won’t wear their seatbelts either.”

“Kinda wild hill for them to die on. I can understand people feeling not worried about it and not bothering to put it on, but refusing to the point that they’d rather walk home than wear a seatbelt for five minutes?”

“This one is fully on them.” – SummitJunkie7

“Just as another tip, this is also why you should keep the passenger space of your car clean, and also why pets should be in carriers or harnesses that are buckled in and secure. Anything loose in the car can potentially become a deadly projectile in a car accident, and then forces at play are shocking to actually experience. Even low-speed crashes can be dangerous without a seatbelt.”

“I was rear-ended at a red light when I was about 19, and the force of going forward and then being pulled back by my seatbelt was hard enough to snap the mechanism that kept my seat upright. When my MIL was young, she was hit head-on by an 18-wheeler on the interstate. She was fortunate enough to survive with surprisingly minor injuries, but sadly, her dog, who was loose in the car with her, didn’t survive.”

“Seatbelts are SO important, both for you and your passengers. Absolutely stand your ground on that.” – ScroochDown

“I had a friend in high school who refused to wear seat belts ‘because his dad never did’ (his dad had some sort of surgery which had weakened his rib cage, meaning even a seatbelt could have collapsed his chest cavity, or at the very least, this is the story my friend used as an excuse)”

“I told him, ‘First of all, you aren’t your dad and you have no medical reason for not wearing a seat belt; and second, I don’t care if you die in a car accident, I just don’t want your body hurtling through the car and killing me. Either buckle up or get out.'”

“He buckled up. If your friends respect you, they will, at a minimum, recognize the concept of ‘your car, your rules.’ Stand your ground dude. Let ’em walk.” – LordAries13

“This is an example of obstinate stupidity, quite literally.”

“It’s not an uncommon conspiracy theory to think that it’s more dangerous to wear seatbelts, which is obviously wrong and has no serious data or logic behind it. And while conspiracy theorists know deep down that they’re wrong, they really like feeling smug that they’ve ‘seen through the lies that fooled everyone else.'”

“So they would rather spend half an hour being cold while walking home than admit that they’re not as smart as they wish they were.”

“When you get two of these people together, they’re deadly afraid that the other person will realize that they’re a fraud. And they will double down on their double down.”

“But it’s hard to believe they’d double down over something as simple as wearing a seatbelt. Good job on your part, OP.” – Hates_Stupid_People

The subReddit was shocked that the OP’s friends were so insistent about this and said, of course, that the OP was right to push back on this.

Safety is safety, and seatbelt safety is an important form of that, period.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan has been a part of the George Takei family since 2019 when she wrote some of her favorite early pieces: Sesame Street introducing its first character who lived in foster care and Bruce Willis delivering a not-so-Die-Hard opening pitch at a Phillies game. She's gone on to write nearly 3,000 viral and trending stories for George Takei, Comic Sands, Percolately, and ÜberFacts. With an unstoppable love for the written word, she's also an avid reader, poet, and indie novelist.