Stаr Trek Sһips Do Hаve Seаt Belts – Wһy Doesn’t Stаrfleet Use Tһem?

Star Trek: Lower Decks confirmed that Starfleet ships have seat belts, so why are officers always getting flung around the bridge?


Warning: SPOILERS for Star Trek: Lower Decks Season 4 Finale – “Old Friends, New Planets”


  • Star Trek: Lower Decks highlights the presence of seat belts on Starfleet ships, raising the question of why they aren’t used more frequently by bridge crews.
  • While seat belts have been seen in some Star Trek projects, their usage is limited, despite being a common safety feature in modern vehicles.
  • The lack of seat belt usage on starships is likely due to filming logistics and the desire for dynamic action scenes, rather than a lack of in-universe justification. However, Starfleet officers should consider using seat belts more often.

Star Trek: Lower Decks showed that Starfleet ships have seat belts, but, for some reason, starship captains and crews seem to rarely use this common safety feature. Since Star Trek: The Original Series began in 1966, starship crews have been getting tossed around the bridges of their starships. In the 21st century, even the most basic cars have seat belts, so why don’t advanced starships of the far future have them? Starfleet ships are equipped with inertial dampeners that prevent the crew from being flattened every time the ship goes to warp. However, these don’t seem to be very effective when the ship gets hit by a weapon or encounters a spacial anomaly.

In Star Trek: Lower Decks season 4, episode 10, “Old Friends, New Planets,” disgraced Starfleet cadet Nick Locarno (Robert Duncan McNeill) gathers the ships and crews he has been assembling all season into his new Nova Fleet. Nick claims he has assembled the “first totally independent, unaligned fleet in the Alpha Quadrant” as a way to “liberate” lower-level officers across the galaxy. Locarno kidnaps Lt. Beckett Mariner (Tawny Newsome), mistakenly believing that she would be on his side. While Mariner tries to work against Locarno from within his shielded base of operations, Captain Carol Freeman (Dawnn Lewis) and the crew of the USS Cerritos work to rescue Mariner.

Star Trek: Lower Decks Shows Starfleet Ships Have Seat Belts After All

Star Trek Lower Decks 4 finale Mariner Genesis Device Seatbelts

To convince the Federation to listen to him, Locarno threatens them with a black market Ferengi Genesis Device with the potential to wipe out all life on a planet. After Locarno kidnaps Mariner, she sabotages his fleet-wide message by telling everyone that Locarno is “an idiot and his plan is stupid,” before Locarno cuts her off. Mariner then grabs the Genesis Device and escapes on a Starfleet vessel, the USS Passaro. To keep the Genesis Device from rolling around on the ship’s bridge, Mariner buckles it into the seat next to her, calling “G.D” her “new First Officer.” This proves to be a smart move, as Mariner soon has to fly into an ion storm to avoid Nick’s dogged pursuit of his bargaining tool.

The fact that Starfleet ships do indeed have seat belts raises the question of why the bridge crews don’t use them more often. Seat belts have been seen a few other times throughout various Star Trek projects, but not as often as they perhaps should. Many shuttles and smaller ships have been shown to have seat belts or harnesses, as they can make much quicker adjustments in speed and direction. In J.J. Abrams’ Kelvin timeline Star Trek films, both the USS Franklin and the USS Enterprise have seat belts.

On Star Trek: Enterprise, Ensign Hoshi Sato (Linda Park) once suggested the Enterprise NX-01 should be equipped with seat belts, though apparently no one heeded her suggestion.

Why Star Trek Doesn’t Use Seat Belts Even If Starships Have Them

Star Trek TNG Riker Data Troi Shuttle Seat Belts

There is no clear in-universe reason to explain why starship bridge crews, in particular, do not use seat belts more often. With the inertial dampeners, starship crews would not need to wear seat belts all the time, but they would be useful in combat situations. Many bridge officers have been injured because they flew out of their seats when their ships were fired upon or performed complicated evasive maneuvers. With the technology of the far future, they should be able to craft seat belts or harnesses that could deploy on their own in dangerous situations.

Seat belts were still new and not particularly common in average vehicles when TOS began airing in the 1960s, which could be one reason for the lack of seat belts on starships.

The actual reason Star Trek officers don’t use seat belts has more to do with real-world filming logistics than any actual science. For one, it looks more dynamic to have actors throw themselves around the bridge during intense battle scenes. Even when the bridge is calm, it just looks cooler to see the officers sitting in their chairs without cumbersome straps criss-crossing over their uniforms. Plus, officers, and captains in particular, often get up and walk around, and constantly having to buckle and unbuckle their seat belts would get annoying. Starfleet officers should probably wear their seat belts more often, but at least Star Trek: Lower Decks confirmed that their starships have them.

Related Posts

Former 49ers defensive player says QB Brock Purdy “is here to stay”

Logan Ryan appeared in five regular season games for the San Francisco 49ers in 2023. He started two of them. Ryan also played in all three of…

RHOBH: Annemarie Wiley Says She Spoke to One of Crystal “14 Friends,” Calls Her Actions “Pure Evil” and Suggests Crystal’s Living Her “Karma,” See Her Scathing Post

Annemarie Wiley shared she met another member of Crystal Kung Minkoff’s “14 friends” who “dropped her,” hinted that “what she did” to them was “pure evil,” and suggested she’s…

RHONY’s Jenna Lyons Thinks Kyle Richards is “Coming Over” to Her Team and Wants to Style the RHOBH Star Amid Morgan Wade Romance Rumors

Jenna Lyons revealed she would most like to style Kyle Richards because she believes the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star is “coming over to [her] team.”…

Why Fans Are Focused on Kyle Richards’ Massive Cushion Cut Engagement Ring

People have been paying attention to the RHOBH cast member’s rings amid her separation from Mauricio Umansky.  There’s been a lot of chatter about Kyle Richards and her engagement and wedding…

Lisa Rinna Would ‘Love to Play a Murderer’ After Starring as a ‘Crazy’ Parent in Mommy Meanest (Exclusive)

In the Lifetime movie, Rinna stars as a woman who sends her own daughter anonymous, bullying text messages After Lisa Rinna exited The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills in early 2023,…

REPORT: Paul “PK” Kemsley Storms Off After Chat With Mauricio Umansky, and Steps Out Looking “Frazzled” to Film RHOBH Season 14 Amid Separation, See Video as Insider Speaks on Marriage & Split From Dorit Kemsley

Paul “PK” Kemsley was spotted filming for the upcoming 14th season of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills on Thursday at The Henry in West Hollywood, California — just as he and his…