Don’t make a fatal decision: always wear your seat belt! Even at low speeds or on short trips, in a crash you’re twice as likely to die if not using your seat belt.
Young car drivers are the worst offenders for not wearing their seat belts
Young drivers and passengers have the lowest seat belt-wearing rates, combined with the highest accident rate. Often they believe that it is not cool to use a seat belt, especially if their mates are not wearing theirs. The reasons given include:
- It makes them look geeky?
- It’s a bit embarrassing?
- It makes them feel uncomfortable?
- “I’m a safe driver.”
- “It won’t happen to me!”
- “What’s the point? I’m only going on a short journey.” (A third of all accidents happen within one mile of the drivers’ home.)
Clunk click – every trip
What could happen when a seatbelt is not worn, a video from ThinkUK.
It only takes three seconds to put your seat belt on
Seat belts should be worn. No one can predict everyone’s actions and you never know what’s going to happen to you or to your passengers. Why not just belt up? It only takes 3 seconds to put the seat belt on.
You must ensure that children are using the correct car seat or restraint.
A seat belt is not required when reversing
You don’t need to wear a seat belt if you’re reversing, or if you are supervising a learner driver who is reversing.
A 30 mph crash without a seat belt
Imagine you are seated in the back of the car and crash at 30 mph. If you are unrestrained, you will hit the front seat – and anyone in it – with a force of between 30 and 60 times your own body weight. (Similar to the weight of a baby elephant!)
This could result in death or serious injury to you and people sitting in the front seat. Any compensation for injury following an accident may be reduced if you were not wearing a seat belt.
If you don’t wear your seat belt you will be fined
The law requires you wear a seat belt when driving a car in the UK.
When stopped by the police, if you or any of your passengers are not wearing seat belts then an on-the-spot fine of £100 will apply (maximum £500 fine if prosecuted) to each person not wearing their seat belt.
The driver of the car is not responsible for passengers over 14 years old who don’t wear their seat belts, but it is the drivers’ responsibility for ensuring that younger passengers wear seat belts or safety restraints.