This page is simply a list of things that have been credited—in many cases by medical professionals—with having physically saved people’s lives in traffic collisions.

It’s up to you whether to frame them in the context of conversations where someone plays the “if it saves one life…” gambit, to illustrate confirmation bias and the straws that people clutch at when have had a traumatic experience, or just as idle amusement.

So—other than the biggies such as rescuers, medical intervention, seatbelts, your choice of deity and obviously The Polystyrene Hat of Invincibility—what’s been definitely keeping people out of the morgue?

  • A rucksack. “The police and doctors said his rucksack saved his life.”
  • A tight-fitting dress. “Doctors told Miss Turner that her bodycon dress was so tight it acted like an old-fashioned corset and stopped her bones popping out and perforating her vital organs.”
  • A second hoodie. “A mum says an extra hoodie saved her son’s life when he was hit by a car.”
  • Only using one pillow. “Paramedics…said if his head had been higher on a second pillow he would probably not be alive.”
  • Mud. “Paramedics told his neighbours he would have been killed had the ground not been so muddy.”
  • Jamaica Ginger Cake. “I was very lucky, because the bag of food that I had with me might have saved my life.”