I require a single movement, can become effective in about three seconds, and greatly increase your safety while in a vehicle. What am I? You guessed it, a seatbelt. Seatbelts go a long way toward protecting you from harm, but studies show that not everyone uses them.
Why Wear a Seatbelt?
Seatbelts generally reduce the risk of fatality by 45%. They also reduce the risk of sustaining moderate to serious injury by 50%. According to the NHTSA, the use of seatbelts saved nearly 15,000 lives in 2016.
Failing to wear a seatbelt affects everyone. It increases costs for the rest of society. Not wearing a seatbelt causes higher insurance premiums for everyone, affects taxes, and results in idle time because of additional traffic following an accident. Not wearing a seatbelt doesn’t just endanger you, but it also endangers everyone in the vehicle. An unsecured passenger can become a projectile in the event of an accident. Many people claim that seatbelts are uncomfortable, but their benefits far outweigh the negative aspects.
Do I Have to Wear a Seatbelt?
Unless you are 18+ and live in the state of New Hampshire, yes, you must wear a seatbelt. The other 49 states all have seatbelt laws. These laws differ from state to state. Most states are secondary law states. This means that an officer can write a ticket for not wearing a seatbelt, but only if you have been pulled over for another reason. Primary law states allow an officer to pull you over solely for not wearing a seatbelt. These states tend to have a higher percentage of seatbelt users than other states.
Using a seatbelt just makes sense. A seatbelt protects you both physically and legally. To learn more about applicable seatbelt laws and how they affect you, or to obtain quality legal representation, contact us at LeBaron & Jensen.