This race car driver cheaped out on harness belts and paid the price when they failed in a crash.
Luis Monzon Artiles shared a shocking video on Facebook earlier this week showing what his body suffered after a brake failure stuffed his car into a wall. Most of his safety gear was up to snuff except his safety harness, a cheap counterfeit from Aliexpress (owned by Alibaba,) which failed upon impact, sending Luis into his steering wheel and breaking several bones.
Check out the cautionary tale of a video below. Warning, it’s a pretty gnarly crash.
Here’s a couple of photos he shared as well.
In the crash video above, although it looks like Luis mounted his race harness improperly, an article by SafeBraking.com, who presumably reached out to Luis, claims that Luis mounted them correctly and cheap metal on the end-links are to blame.
The cause of the belt failure was not due to improper installation. The real cause was the belts were counterfeits. The fake belts copied the Sabelt look but not the engineering and quality.
Luis captioned the video as brake failure. Keen ears and eyes will notice as Luis frantically tries to downshifts, engine braking, scrubbing as much speed as he can before colliding with tires.
Although Luis doesn’t mention it, his steering wheel looks like a cheap, knockoff too, just eye-balling how it broke so easily.
The article reports that Luis crawled out relatively intact with only a broken nose, hands and feet, a small price to pay for what could’ve been a horrific ending.
Although racing is expensive, it can be affordable for even the smallest budgets. That being said, when you’re starting out as an amateur racer, to get by, it might tempt you to cheap out on safety. All your friends make it out of track days unscathed, right?
Wrong. One should never skimp on safety and buying the best you can afford is not a guideline but a rule.
Legitimate race series with seasoned safety techs can and will call you out on your cheapness.
How to ID knockoffs.
Generally, you’ll want to find a FIA Holograph sticker and compare the quality of the workmanship with known original products. The shoddy workmanship on counterfeit products will stick out like a sore thumb.
You definitely do NOT want to shop for your safety gear through AliExpress, Alibaba, or any site offering ridiculously cheap safety gear at a tenth of what the real thing costs.
Use your head, buy genuine, perhaps shop local, and consult those in the know.
Your life depends on it.