Seat-belt bill will save lives
Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 20, 2001
An additional 51 lives spared per year, 979 injuries prevented and a savings of $88.
Tuesday, March 20, 2001
An additional 51 lives spared per year, 979 injuries prevented and a savings of $88.4 million per year – sounds good to us.
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How can that happen? By increasing the rate of seat-belt use to 73 percent.
To do that, legislators have proposed a bill that would make not wearing a seat belt a primary offense, giving law enforcement officials the right to pull over – and ticket – motorists who themselves or front-seat passengers are not using seat belts.
Currently, officers can ticket drivers when they or passengers are not using seat belts, however, the officers cannot stop the driver for that reason alone. Another traffic violation must be made for the officer to be able to pull over the driver and ticket him or her.
The new legislation, which breezed through the Senate Transportation Committee, would make violators subject to a $25 fine. The infraction would not appear on the driver’s record.
While $25 may not seem like much of a deterrent, once individuals have to start shelling out money here and there, they will likely start to buckle up and save some cash. And that will end up saving lives.