Philadelphia Injury News

Significance of Seatbelt Law

Buckle up is the shortest message of the Seat Belt Law

Pennsylvania’s Department of Transportation, as well as traveling experts knows that the impact resulting from a motor vehicle crash traveling at just 12 MPH is already a sure killer. When a crash happens, not any arms or legs are strong enough to manage the impact as the body is impelled towards the dashboard or windshield of a vehicle. According to PennDOT officials, only by being strapped to a seat belt can slow down an impact. You are given a split second time to deal with the crash.

PennDOT is emphasizing the common message that seat belts save lives. In a vehicular crash, you are given a 1/50th of a second to respond and stop your body. Accident experts noted that your arms and legs do not react that fast and even if they do; they will likely be broken due to the force. Only a seat belt has the capacity to hold your body and slow down the impact. Another good reason is that your body will be kept inside the vehicle not ejected out. Being ejected from the vehicle gives dying statistics 25 times more.

PennDOT’s enforcement has continually led the educational campaign for riders of any vehicle to be aware of Buckle Up PA. This means that all drivers and all passengers in the front seat must be properly restrained when inside a motor vehicle. The driver has the responsibility to have himself and front passengers used seatbelts as safety precaution. He should also check that all kids between 8 and 18 had their seatbelts whether they are in front or in the back. PennDOT gives the reminder that no driver below 18 is allowed to drive the vehicle when available seatbelts are less than the number of passengers. This means that if the driver is below 18, all the passengers must be properly restrained. All violations enumerated have a fine of $10.

Drivers are obliged by law to place a restraint system on any child from, birth to 4 years that are inside the vehicle. It is mandated by Pennsylvania law that seat belts, as well as a proper child booster seat must be provided for all kids within the ages of 4 and 8 when riding a vehicle. If these laws are violated, there will be a fine of $100 but could be invalidated if driver shows he has purchased a car seat.

Pennsylvania DOT applies a mix of primary and secondary enforcement. Primary enforcement is the authority of a traffic officer to pull you over solely for violating a seat belt or child passenger safety law. In the secondary enforcement, traffic officer will issue a citation for a seat belt or child safety seat violation after you were stopped for another traffic offense. PennDOT pointed out that for drivers under 18, the number of passengers versus the number of seat belts law is a primary violation. The child passenger safety laws related to 4-year-old children are primary enforcement, while all others are secondary.

According to a report published by the Scranton Times Tribune, as of February, 2010, the seatbelt percentage usage of Pennsylvania is 85.1% which is way down compared with other states that have strict primary enforcement laws. For example, the rate of New Jersey was nearly 92 %. The report noted that safety experts, like Dr. Paul Slovic, a psychology specialist of risk at the State University of Oregon, admitted that a 100% compliance of the seatbelt law is impossible due to lack of education and understanding regarding the capability of the seat belt use and what it can do to avert serious injury during a car accident.

If you have received a traffic ticket, please contact an experienced traffic lawyer. Protect right to drive legally

 

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