Florida – The FL Department of Transportation (FDOT) says the statewide safety belt usage rate is the highest it’s ever been – 89.6%.
“We’ve been doing this safety belt survey every year since 1999, and it’s steadily increased each year,” said Karen Smith, FDOT Public Information. “Last year was 89.4% and we’ve seen a slight increase this year and it’s at an all-time high.”
FL’s use rate has been above the national average every year since the primary safety belt law, which allows law enforcement officers to ticket drivers who aren’t buckled up, went into effect in 2009.
NHTSA research shows that when lap and shoulder combo seat belts are used, they reduce the risk of fatal injury to front-seat car passengers by 45% and they reduce the risk of moderate-to-critical injury by 50%.
“Buckling up is the single most effective thing you can do to protect yourself in a crash,” said Jim Boxold, FDOT Secretary. “Safety belts save thousands of lives each year. I appreciate the dedication of our safety team and our partners to reach this all-time high usage rate.”
“Here at the Florida Department of Transportation we run campaigns like ‘Click it or Ticket’ to educate motorists and the general public about safety belt importance,” said Smith. “Also, we do have visibility law enforcement with our partners to encourage people to buckle up every trip.”
To see the June 2016 Safety Belt Use in FL report, go to DOT.State.FL.US.
Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2016.