When you’re on a long road trip, there’s nothing you want more than to stretch your legs. No one likes being squished into a seat for hours on end, so even just putting your feet up on the dash can be a huge relief.
But while this might seem harmless, it’s actually one of the most dangerous things you can do in a car. And for 22-year-old Bethany Benson, it nearly cost her everything.
After visiting her mother, Bethany and her boyfriend were in the middle of a long drive home. Feeling a bit restless, she decided to recline in her seat and rest her feet on the dash.
But everything changed in a flash. An accident a few cars ahead of them caused a tractor trailer in front of them to brake suddenly. Her boyfriend was able to brake, but not before colliding with the back of the trailer.
Bethany’s boyfriend would need 100 stitches, but she suffered even worse damage. When the airbags deployed, their force hit her legs at nearly 200mph — the speed of a Formula One race car. Her knees struck her face, breaking her nose, left eye socket, and cheek bone.
Her feet were also broken in the accident, and the damage was so severe that her shoe sizes changed. Now, she has to buy expensive custom orthotics for her shoes. The crash even caused damage to her mental faculties. Her mother says her now-26-year-old daughter’s recovery still has a long way to go.