Belt Up or Pay the Ultimate Price
Wearing a seat belt in the front seat saves thousands of lives every year. The law requires anyone in the front or back of a car to wear a seat belt or appropriate restraint, if one is available.
A Transport Research Laboratory study revealed that only 54% of adult passengers wear seat belts in the back of the car compared with 94% of passengers in the front. In a crash at 30mph, if you are unrestrained an impact could result in death or serious injury to both yourself and front seat occupants. See the website Think! for further advice and reasons why wearing your seat belt is a seriously sensible idea:
• Always wear a seatbelt. In a crash you’re twice as likely to die if you don’t.
• Not wearing a seatbelt can be a fatal decision even on short, familiar journeys and at low speeds.
• Wear your seat belt correctly so it can offer you the best possible protection in a crash.
Seat Belt Law
You must wear a seat belt if one is fitted in the seat you’re using – there are only a few exceptions. You’re also only allowed 1 person in each seat fitted with a seat belt. Children must use the correct car seat for their weight until they reach 135 centimetres tall or their 12th birthday, whichever is first. You can be fined up to £500 if you don’t wear a seat belt when you’re supposed to.
Although most drivers and front seat passengers will belt up, many people lapse when choosing not to wear their set belt in the back of the car. This is despite the fact that back seat passengers not wearing seat belts are three times more likely to suffer death or serious injury as passengers who do.
Since seat belt wearing was made compulsory in 1983, it is estimated that casualties have been reduced by at least 370 deaths and 7,000 serious injuries per year for front seat passengers and in excess of 70 deaths and 11,000 serious injuries for rear seat belt wearers.