Senior Sergeant Pat Cleary of the Ballarat Highway Patrol has attended enough accidents to understand just how vulnerable the human body is.
One of the easiest ways to avoid traumatic injury in an accident or otherwise, says Sgt Cleary, is to keep your body inside the car.
People may not realise it’s illegal to have any part of your body outside of a vehicle, unless you are signalling.
“Injuries suffered by having a body part protruding out of car are far more regular than they need to be,” he says.
“I’ve seen injuries as bad as having an arm ground off to the shoulder, by being dragged along the bitumen.”
According to VicRoads, under the Road Safety Act, s.268: How persons must travel in or on a motor vehicle
(3) A person must not travel in or on a motor vehicle with any part of the person's body outside a window or door of the vehicle, unless the person is the driver of the vehicle and is giving a hand signal—
(a) for changing direction to the right in accordance with rule 50; or
(b) for stopping or slowing in accordance with rule 55.
Penalty: maximum fine of $466.