Seat belt legislation

Seat belt legislation requires the fitting of seat belts to motor vehicles and the wearing of seat belts by motor vehicle occupants to be mandatory. Laws requiring the fitting of seat belts to cars have in some cases been followed by laws mandating their use, with the effect that thousands of deaths on the road have been prevented. Different laws apply in different countries to the wearing of seat belts.

National comparisons


In Australia, after the introduction of mandatory front outboard mounting points in 1964, the use of seat belts by all vehicle passengers was made compulsory in the states of Victoria and South Australia in 1970 and 1971, respectively.[1] By 1973, the use of fitted seat belts by vehicle occupants was made compulsory for the rest of Australia and some other countries during the 1970s and 1980s. The subsequent dramatic decline in road deaths is generally because of seat belt laws and subsequent road safety campaigns.[2][3][4] Seat belts are not required for bus occupants, reversing drivers, and those driving some slow-moving vehicles. The laws for these differ depending on the state or territory with jurisdiction.


All provinces in Canada have primary enforcement seat belt laws. In 1976, Ontario was the first province to pass a law which required vehicle occupants to wear seat belts.[5]

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, seat belts must be worn at all times if they are fitted to a vehicle unless reversing. Passengers may be exempt from wearing a seat belt for different reasons. Since September 18, 2006, children travelling in the UK must also use an appropriate child seat in addition to the standard seat belt, unless they are 12 years old and/or have reached at least 135 centimetres (53 in) in height.[6]

In the UK, a requirement for anchorage points was introduced in 1965, followed by the requirement in 1968 to fit three-point belts in the front outboard positions on all new cars and all existing cars back to 1965. Successive UK governments proposed, but failed to deliver, seat belt legislation throughout the 1970s. Front seat belts were compulsory equipment on all new cars registered in the UK from 1972, although it did not become compulsory for them to be worn until 1983. Rear seat belts were compulsory equipment from 1986 and became compulsory for them to be worn in 1991. However, it has never been a legal requirement for cars registered before those dates to be fitted with seat belts.[7] In one such attempt in 1979 similar claims for potential lives and injuries saved were advanced. William Rodgers, then Secretary of State for Transport in the Callaghan Labour Government (1976–1979), stated: "On the best available evidence of accidents in this country - evidence which has not been seriously contested - compulsion could save up to 1000 lives and 10,000 injuries a year."[8]

United States

Seat belt use by type of law, US, 2008
Seat belt use by type of law in the US, 2008

In the United States, seat belt legislation varies by state. The state of Wisconsin introduced legislation in 1961 requiring seat belts to be fitted to the front outboard seat positions of cars.[9] Seat belts have been mandatory equipment since the 1968 model year per Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 208.

New York State passed the first law in the US mandating the use of seat belts in 1984 under the leadership of John D. States, an orthopedic surgeon who dedicated his career to improving automotive safety.[10] Depending on which state a driver is in, not wearing a seat belt in the front seat is either a primary offense or a secondary offense, with the exception of New Hampshire, which does not have a law requiring people over age 18 to wear a seat belt. In the front seat, the driver and each passenger must wear a seat belt, one person per belt. In some states, such as New York, New Hampshire, and Michigan, belts in the rear seats are not mandatory for people over the age of 16. The driver and front-seat passengers aged 16 or older can be fined up to $50 each for failure to wear a seat belt. In California, passengers must be 15 years or older to accompany the driver in the front seat. Children 14 and younger must sit in the rear seat until they reach the age of 15.

Seat belt use by sex, age, and type of law, US, 2008
Seat belt use by sex, age, and type of law in the US, 2008

A primary offense means that a police officer can pull a driver over for the seat belt law violation alone, and secondary offense indicates that one can be punished for a seat belt law violation only if they are already pulled over for another reason. By January 2007 25 states and the District of Columbia had primary seat belt laws, 24 had secondary seat belt laws, and New Hampshire had no laws.[11] In 2009, Public Health Law Research published several evidence briefs summarizing the research assessing the effect of a specific law or policy on public health. One stated, "Safety belt laws work, but there is strong evidence to support that primary enforcement safety belt laws are more effective than secondary enforcement laws in increasing seat belt use and reducing crash injuries."[12]

Another found that "there is strong evidence that enhanced seat belt enforcement interventions can substantially increase seat belt use and its associated benefits."[13]

Developing countries

In many developing countries, pedestrians, cyclists, rickshaw operators and moped users represent the majority of road users.

In India, all cars manufactured after March 25, 1994 are equipped with front seat belts. The rule was extended for rear seats in 2002. The usage of seat belts is to be implemented by the respective states, with most states making seat belt usage for front seat passengers mandatory in 2002. Older vehicles that did not originally have seat belts were exempted. However, enforcement is weak in most parts of the country.

In Indonesia, belts are only mandatory for front seats. Many low-entry car models are not equipped with rear seat belts.[14]

In Malaysia, the first stage of safety belt laws was implemented in 1979. This was expanded in January 2009 to include rear passengers. Passenger vehicles registered prior to January 1, 1995, and those weighing more than 3.5 tons are exempted from this rule. The third and fourth stages, which will deal with baby and child seats and the number of passengers in a vehicle, have not taken effect.[15]

In the Philippines, a seat belt law, Republic Act No. 8750, was approved in August 5, 1999. The law took effect in 2000 and requires all public and private vehicles, except motorcycles and tricycles, to have their front seats equipped with seat belts. Front seats as defined by the law includes the first row of seats behind the driver for public utility buses. Those below the age of six are prohibited to occupy the front seats of motor vehicles even if wearing a seat belt. Jeepneys are only required to have lap belts for the front seat passengers and the driver.[16][17]

The table below gives an overview of when seat belt legislation was first introduced in different countries. It includes both regional and national legislation.

Country Compulsory wearing Compulsory fitting Source
Cars Bus passengers Cars Buses
Driver Front passengers Rear passengers
 Argentina 1994 1994 1994 (First row only, all in school buses) [18]
 Australia 1970 (Victoria), 1971 (SA, NSW), 1972 (national), 1986 (child restraints)   1969, 1970 (back seat, Victoria) 1971 (back seat) 1983 (≤3.5 tonnes) [19][20]
 Canada 1976            
 Czech Republic 1966 (outside cities)
1990 (all)
2004 1968   [21]
 European Union 1993       [22]
 Finland 1975, 1982 fines given 1975 over 15 years old passenger, 1982 all and fines given 1987, 1994 taxi passengers 2006 1971 (front seat)1981 (back seat)
 France 1973 (outside cities), 1975 (cities at night), 1979 (all) 1990 2003 1967, 1978 (back seat) 2003 [22]


 Germany 1976 1984 1999 1970, 1979 (back seat) 1999 Angurtpflicht
 Hungary 1976   1993       [19]
 Hong Kong 1983 1983 1996 2004 (minibuses) 1996 (back seat) 2004 (minibuses); July 2018 (franchised buses)


 India         1994 (front seats), 2002 (rear seats)    
 Ireland 1979   1992   1971 (front seats), 1992 (rear seats)   [25]
 Italy 1989 1990 (where available)‡ 2006‡ 1988 (new vehicles); 1989 (all*, front seats); 1990 (new vehicles, back seats); 2000 (all*, back seats) 2006 [26]
 Japan 1971† (1985) 1971 (no fines), 1985 (fines on freeway), 1993 (all) 2008 2008 1969   [22]
 Myanmar 2017 2017 2017 2016 (motorway buses enforced)
 Netherlands 1976 1992   1975 (front) 1990 (rear)
 New Zealand 1972 1972 (15 years and over), 1979 (8 years and over) 1989♣   1972 (vehicles registered after 1965), 1975 (after 1955)   [27]
 Philippines 2000 (those below 6 years prohibited to occupy front seats) 2000 (first row beside the driver's seat only) 2000 [28]
 Singapore 1973 1973 1993 2008 (small buses) 1973    
 Spain 1975            
 Sri Lanka 2011 2011          
 Sweden 1975 1986 1969 (front) 1970 (rear) 2004 [22][29]
 Thailand 1996 2009        
 United Kingdom 1983 1991 2006 1967 (front) 1987 (rear) [30]
 United States 1984 (New York; seat belt use law is jurisdiction of individual states) Wisconsin, 1961. Federally, front lap 1965 model year; front shoulder & rear lap 1968; 3-point front 1974 [22]

* - actually only vehicles registered after 15 June 1976; in previous registered vehicles fitting is optional
† - required by the law, but no penalty for violation at the time
‡ - required by the law, but low enforcement
♣ - definitely introduced by this date, possibly earlier


Lives Saved by Safety Belts and Air Bags, NHTSA, DOT
Lives saved by seat belts and airbags in the United States (1991–2001)

Studies by road safety authorities conclude that seat belt legislation has reduced the number of casualties in road accidents.

Experiments using both crash test dummies and human cadavers also indicated that wearing seat belts should lead to reduced risk of death and injury in car crashes.

Studies of accident outcomes suggest that fatality rates among car occupants are reduced by between 30 and 50 percent if seat belts are worn. The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that death risks for a driver wearing a lap-shoulder seat belt are reduced by 48 percent. The same study indicated that in 2007, an estimated 15,147 lives were saved by seat belts in the United States and that if seat belt use were increased to 100 percent, an additional 5024 lives would have been saved.[31]

An earlier statistical analysis by the NHTSA claimed that seat belts save over 10,000 lives every year in the US.[32]

According to a more recent fact sheet produced by the NHTSA:

"In 2012, seat belts saved an estimated 12,174 lives among passenger vehicle occupants 5 and older. [...] Research has found that lap/shoulder seat belts, when used, reduce the risk of fatal injury to front-seat passenger car occupants by 45% and the risk of moderate-to-critical injury by 50%. [...] Research on the effectiveness of child safety seats has found them to reduce the risk of fatal injury by 71% for infants (younger than 1 year old) and by 54% for toddlers (1 to 4 years old) in passenger cars." [33]

By 2009, despite large increases in population and the number of vehicles, road deaths in Victoria had fallen below 300, less than a third of the 1970 level, the lowest since records were kept, and far below the per capita rate in jurisdictions such as the United States. This reduction was generally attributed to aggressive road safety campaigns beginning with the seat belt laws.[34][35]

A 2008 study in the Journal of Health Economics found that mandatory seat belt laws in the U.S. "significantly increased seatbelt use among high school age youths by 45-80%" and "significantly reduced traffic fatalities and serious injuries resulting from fatal crashes by 8 and 9%, respectively."[36] The authors note that these "results suggest that if all states had primary enforcement seatbelt laws then regular youth seatbelt use would be nearly universal and youth fatalities would fall by about 120 per year."[36]


A number of groups and individuals are opposed to seat belt legislation. The most common grounds for opposition are:

  • The view that laws requiring the wearing of seat belts are an infringement of individual liberty.
  • Claims that official estimates of the number of lives saved by seat belts are overstated or fail to take into account additional risks for other road users.

Risk compensation and other theories

The most common basis for disputing estimates of the benefits of seat belts is risk compensation and risk homeostasis, advanced by researchers John Adams and Gerald Wilde. The idea of this theory is that, if the risk of death or injury from a car crash is reduced by the wearing of seat belts, drivers will respond by reducing the precautions they take against crashes. Adams accepts the hypothesis that wearing seat belts improves a vehicle occupant’s chances of surviving a crash.[37] In order to explain the disparity between the agreed improvement in crash survival and the observed results, Adams and Wilde argue that protecting someone from the consequences of risky behaviour may tend to encourage greater risk taking. Wilde states, "to compel a person to use protection from the consequences of hazardous driving, as seat belt laws do, is to encourage hazardous driving. A fine for non-compliance will encourage seat belt use, but the fact that the law fails to increase people's desire to be safe encourages compensatory behaviour." [38]

Studies and experiments have been carried out to examine the risk compensation theory. In one experiment subjects were asked to drive go-karts around a track under various conditions. It was found that subjects who started driving belted did not drive any slower when subsequently unbelted, but those who started driving unbelted did drive consistently faster when subsequently belted.[39] A study of habitual non-seat belt wearers driving in freeway conditions found evidence that they had adapted to seat belt use by adopting higher driving speeds and closer following distances.[40] In another study, taxi drivers who were habitual non-wearers were timed over a route with passengers who did, and others who did not, insist on the driver wearing a belt. They completed the route faster when belted.[41]

In addition to risk compensation, Adams has suggested other mechanisms that may lead to inaccurate or unsupportable predictions of positive benefits from seat belt legislation.

  • Case-control studies based on voluntary use of safety aids can attribute to the aid benefits that actually come from the risk-averse nature of those likely to use them voluntarily (confounding), particularly early adopters.
  • Fatality rates are subject to considerable stochastic noise, and comparison of single years or short periods can be misleading.

Individual liberty

Opponents have objected to the laws on libertarian principles.[42] Some do so on the grounds that seat belt laws infringe on their civil liberties. For example, in a 1986 letter to the editor of the New York Times, a writer argued that seat belt legislation was "coercive" and that "a mandatory-seat-belt law violates the right to bodily privacy and self-control".[43]

A counterpoint to the libertarian view is that by reducing death and serious injury, mandatory seat belt use and enforcement of seat belt laws results in substantial social benefits. For example, an analysis by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that in 2010 non-fatal injuries to motor vehicle occupants cost the United States $48 billion in medical expenses and lost work.[44] An example is an unbelted driver who kills or injures another road user because he/she slides out of proper seating position and cannot regain control of the vehicle during slippery conditions. Another notable scenario is of rear-seated passengers being forced forward in a crash and thus inadvertently harming the driver or front passenger. A University of Wisconsin study demonstrated that car accident victims who had not worn seat belts cost the hospital (and the state, in the case of the uninsured) on average 25% more.[45]

Side-effects of seat belts

Neck injuries can be caused by the deceleration from a high speed. The passengers head continues to move forward while the body is restrained, potentially causing paralyzing injuries. A study of such injuries notes, "Seatbelts save lives. However, they may cause injury to adjacent structures and when they malfunction can cause injury to the abdominal viscera, bony skeleton and vascular structures. The motor industry has attempted to reduce these injuries by modification of vehicle design and safety equipment."[46]

See also


  1. ^ "A Potted Seat Belt History". Drivers Technology.
  2. ^ Milne, P.W. "Fitting and Wearing of Seat Belts in Australia: The history of a successful countermeasureA" (PDF). February, 1985. Department of Transport; Federal Office of Road Safety, Australian Government Publishing Service. Retrieved 15 March 2013.
  3. ^ Helena Webb (15 August 2006). "Loose belts lose lives". Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
  4. ^ 2005 Regulatory Impact Statement - Seat belt legislation amendments Archived 2007-10-09 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ "Seatbelts Saving Lives In Ontario For 35 Years" (Press release). Ministry of Transportation, Ontario. December 2010.
  6. ^ "Wearing a seat belt and exemptions". Directgov.
  7. ^ "RoSPA History - How Belting Up Became Law". RoSPA. Retrieved 2012-08-02.
  8. ^ "RoSPA History - How Belting Up Became Law" (PDF). john adams.
  9. ^ "The History of Seat Belt Development". School Transportation News. STN Media Group. Archived from the original on 2011-04-10. Retrieved 2011-06-20. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  10. ^ Click it or ticket
  11. ^ "Most Wanted". National Transportation Safety Board.
  12. ^ "Primary Enforcement of Safety Belt Laws". Public Health Law Research. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. December 7, 2009.
  13. ^ "Enhanced Enforcement of Safety Belt Laws". Public Health Law Research. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. 2009. Archived from the original on 2011-04-14. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  14. ^ "Indonesia". US Department of State. Archived from the original on 2012-09-28. Retrieved 2012-10-02. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  15. ^ "All must belt up in MPVs". The Star. 29 December 2008. Archived from the original on 1 January 2009. Retrieved 1 January 2009. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  16. ^ "Republic Act No. 8750". LAWPHiL. Eleventh Congress of the Philippines. Archived from the original on 5 August 1999. Retrieved 11 April 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  17. ^ Crisostomo, Sheila (1 May 2000). "Seat Belt Law takes effect today". The Philippine Star. Retrieved 11 April 2015.
  18. ^ (in Spanish) National Law Nº26,687 - Article 30 A, Article 40 K and Article 55
  19. ^ a b
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^ a b c d e "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2005-04-14. Retrieved 2005-05-08. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^;jsessionid=an4pS+wPCztq+ANf1oUxlw__.ntc-as2-guri2a?atto.dataPubblicazioneGazzetta=1988-04-11&atto.codiceRedazionale=088G0149&elenco30giorni=false
  27. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-02. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  28. ^
  29. ^
  30. ^ RoSPA
  31. ^ "Lives Saved Calculations for Seat Belts and Frontal Air Bags" (PDF). National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. December 2009. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  32. ^ Glassbrenner, Donna. "Estimating The Lives Saved By Safety Belts and Air Bags" (PDF). National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 September 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  33. ^ "Traffic Safety Facts - 2012 Data - Occupant Protection" (PDF). National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  34. ^ Sexton, Reid (27 December 2009). "Victoria's road toll at record low". Retrieved 21 November 2010.
  35. ^ Lucas, Clay (9 July 2010). "How low can we go?". Retrieved 21 November 2010.
  36. ^ a b Carpenter, Christopher S.; Stehr, Mark (2008-05-01). "The effects of mandatory seatbelt laws on seatbelt use, motor vehicle fatalities, and crash-related injuries among youths" (PDF). Journal of Health Economics. 27 (3): 642–662. doi:10.1016/j.jhealeco.2007.09.010. ISSN 0167-6296. PMID 18242744.
  37. ^ John Adams (2006). "The Failure of Seat Belt Legislation" (PDF). John Adams. Retrieved 2010-03-04. (primary source)
  38. ^ Wilde GJS (1994). Target Risk. Toronto: PDE Publications. ISBN 0-9699124-0-4. Archived from the original on 2005-08-25. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  39. ^ Streff FM; Geller ES (August 1988). "An experimental test of risk compensation: between-subject versus within-subject analyses" (PDF). Accident Analysis and Prevention. 20 (4): 277–87. doi:10.1016/0001-4575(88)90055-3. hdl:2027.42/27199. PMID 3415759.
  40. ^ Janssen W (April 1994). "Seat belt wearing and driving behaviour: An instrumented-vehicle study". Accident Analysis and Prevention. 26 (2): 249–2. doi:10.1016/0001-4575(94)90095-7. PMID 8198694.
  41. ^ Wilde GJS (1994). Target Risk (1st ed.). ISBN 0-9699124-0-4. Archived from the original on 2006-07-14. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  42. ^ Jeff Jacoby (August 25, 1994). "Unbuckling the Voters" (Op-Ed). Boston Globe.
  43. ^ David Solan (February 26, 1986). "Seat-Belt Laws Violate Your Civil Rights" (Op-Ed). New York Times.
  44. ^ CDC (September 2014). "Data & Statistics (WISQARS): Cost of Injury Reports".
  45. ^ Marion Ceraso; Keri Frisch; Stephen Hargarten; Timothy Corden (September 2006). "Primary Enforcement of Seatbelt Laws: A Means for Decreasing Injuries, Deaths and Crash-Related Costs in Wisconsin?" (PDF). University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-06-11. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  46. ^ Smith, J. E. (2005). Injuries caused by seatbelt - Trauma. pp. Vol. 7, No. 4, 211–215. Archived from the original on 17 October 2006. Retrieved 21 November 2010. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)

References and further reading

  • John Adams (1995). Risk. Routledge. ISBN 1-85728-068-7.
  • Wilde G.S. Target Risk PDE Publications, 1994
  • The Isles report "Seat belt savings: Implications of European Statistics", UK DoT, 1981, Sourced from Death on the Streets, Cars and the Mythology of Road Safety by Robert Davis, Leading Edge Press, North Yorkshire UK, 1992 and "Report questions whether seat belts save lives" by M. Hamer, New Scientist, 7 February 1985 p7
  • Evaluation of Automobile Safety Regulations: The case of Compulsory Seat Belt Legislation in Australia. by J.A.C. Coneybeare, Policy Sciences 12:27-39, 1980
  • Compulsory Seat Belt Use: Further Inferences, by P. Hurst Accident Analysis and Prevention., Vol 11: 27-33, 1979
  • Wilde G. S. Risk Homeostasis and Traffic Accidents Propositions, Deductions and Discussion of Dissension in Recent Reactions, Ergonomics 1988 Vol, 31, 4:439
  • Methodological Issues in Testing the Hypothesis of Risk Compensation by Brian Dulisse, Accident Analysis and Prevention Vol. 25 (5): 285-292, 1997
  • RS 255 The initial impact of seat belt legislation in Ireland by R. Hearne, An Foras Forbatha, Dublin, 1981
  • The efficacy of seat belt legislation: A comparative study of road accident fatality statistics from 18 countries, by J. Adams. Department of Geography University College, London 1981
  • Casualty Reductions, Whose Problem? By F. West-Oram, Traffic Engineering and Control, September 1990
  • The Puzzle of Seat Belts Explained, Press Release of the Annual Conference of the British Psychological Society, April 1999
  • Reconsidering the effects of seat belt Laws and Their Enforcement Status by T.S. Dee Accident Analysis and Prevention., Vol 30(1): 1-10, 1998
AA plc

AA plc, trading as The AA, (formerly The Automobile Association) is a British motoring association founded in 1905, which currently provides car insurance, driving lessons, breakdown cover, loans, motoring advice, road maps and other services. The association demutualised in 1999, to become a private limited company, and in 2002, the AA Motoring Trust was created to continue its public interest and road safety activities.

It is listed on the London Stock Exchange.

Ain't Nobody's Business If You Do

Ain't Nobody's Business if You Do: The Absurdity of Consensual Crimes in Our Free Country is a 1993 book by Peter McWilliams, in which he presents the history of legislation against what he feels are victimless crimes, or crimes that are committed consensually, as well as arguments for their legalization.

The book is divided into five sections.

Part I gives a definition of victimless and consensual crime and outlines the difference between personal morality and governmentally-imposed morality.

Part II presents arguments against the criminalization of victimless crimes.

Part III gives a closer look into some of the individual activities which the author classifies as consensual crimes, such as prostitution and marijuana use, but which the majority of criminologists would classify as victimless.

Part IV gives historical examples of the treatment of consensual and victimless crimes, such as Prohibition, and Biblical examples.

Part V advises readers on what to do to change the laws.Throughout the book are approximately six hundred quotations by noted thinkers on both sides of his positions (primarily supporters).

McWilliams presents a variety of arguments against the criminalization of victimless crimes. Some are philosophical in nature: one argument is that laws against these crimes are based in religion, which violates the separation of church and state. He also claims that they are un-American, as they attempt to homogenize the country to a certain group's idea of morality, and that they create an oppressive society, restricting personal freedoms without justification. Another claim is that they teach irresponsibility, by not letting people deal with the natural consequences of their actions, but rather penalizing them whether or not their actions harmed anyone else.

Other objections are practical: catching the "criminals" involved is an expensive affair. Victimless crimes draw manpower and funds away from crimes that do hurt innocent parties, and enforcement of the laws is not consistent enough to be an effective deterrent. He also argues that actions to help people deal with problems caused by these illegal activities are effectively prevented by their criminalization—for example, no one could be helped about their drinking problems during Prohibition. Additionally, he details how laws against victimless crimes paved the way for organized crime.

Activities examined in detail in Part III include gambling, recreational drug use, medical marijuana, prostitution, homosexuality, pornography, indecent exposure, and seat belt legislation.

Until a few years after McWilliams's death, the text of this book (as well as McWilliams' other books) was available for free in its entirety through his archived web site; though all the books have been removed from that site in favor of links to online retail vendors, the texts have been archived in various formats by others.

Click It or Ticket

Click It or Ticket is a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration campaign aimed at increasing the use of seat belts among young people in the United States. The campaign relies heavily on targeted advertising aimed at teens and young adults.

The Click It or Ticket campaign has existed at state level for many years. In 1993, Governor Jim Hunt launched the campaign in North Carolina in conjunction with a "primary enforcement safety belt law", which allows law enforcement officers to issue a safety belt citation, without observing another offense. Since then, other states have adopted the campaign. In May 2002, the ten states with the most comprehensive campaigns saw an increase of 8.6 percentage points, from 68.5% to 77.1%, in safety belt usage over a four-week period (Solomon, Ulmer, & Preusser, 2002). Recently, Congress approved $30 million in television and radio advertising at both the national and state levels.

Clunk Click Every Trip

"Clunk Click Every Trip" is the slogan of a series of British public information films, commencing in the summer of 1970 presented by Shaw Taylor, then in January 1971, starring the now-disgraced entertainer Jimmy Savile.

The BBC adapted Savile's slogan for the title of his Saturday night variety show beginning in 1973. The slogan was introduced during the previous campaign, fronted by Shaw Taylor and featuring the slogan "Your seatbelt is their security". However, it was the onomatopoeia used by Taylor to describe the act of closing the door and fastening a seatbelt which proved the most memorable aspect of the campaign, and so it was upgraded to act as the slogan when the films moved into colour.

The advertisements highlighted the dangers of traffic collisions and reminded drivers that the first thing they should do after closing the door ("Clunk") is fasten their seatbelt ("Click"). These advertisements, which included graphic sequences of drivers being thrown through the windscreen and, in one Savile-hosted public service announcement, an image of a disfigured woman who survived such an accident, helped lay the groundwork for compulsory seatbelt use in the front seat of a vehicle, which came into force on 31 January 1983 in the UK, although car manufacturers had been legally obliged to fit front seatbelts since 1965.

Edward Hughes (surgeon)

Sir Edward Hughes (4 July 1919 – 16 October 1998) was an eminent Melbourne colorectal surgeon. He was a professor of surgery at Monash University and served as president of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons and chairman of the Menzies Foundation. He played a significant role in influencing the Victorian Government to become the first jurisdiction in the world to introduce legislation for the compulsory use of seat belts in motor vehicles.

James Snow

James Wilfred Snow (July 12, 1929 – September 13, 2008) was a politician in Ontario, Canada. He was a Progressive Conservative Party member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario from 1967 to 1985 who represented the GTA ridings of Halton East and Oakville. He served as a cabinet minister in the governments of William Davis and Frank Miller.

National Maximum Speed Law

The National Maximum Speed Law (NMSL) was a provision of the federal government of the United States 1974 Emergency Highway Energy Conservation Act that prohibited speed limits higher than 55 miles per hour (89 km/h). It was drafted in response to oil price spikes and supply disruptions during the 1973 oil crisis and remained the law until 1995.

While federal officials hoped gasoline consumption would fall by 2.2%, the actual savings were estimated at between 0.5% and 1%.

The law was widely disregarded by motorists nationwide, and some states opposed the law, but many jurisdictions discovered it to be a major source of revenue. Actions ranged from proposing deals for an exemption to de-emphasizing speed limit enforcement. The NMSL was modified in 1987 and 1988 to allow up to 65 mph (105 km/h) limits on certain limited-access rural roads. Congress repealed the NMSL in 1995, fully returning speed limit-setting authority to the individual states.

The law's safety benefit is disputed as research found conflicting results.

The power to set speed limits historically belonged to the states. Prior to the NMSL, the sole exception to this occurred during World War II, when the U.S. Office of Defense Transportation established a national maximum "Victory Speed Limit" of 35 mph to conserve gasoline and rubber for the American war effort. The Victory Speed Limit lasted from May 1942 to August 14, 1945, when the war ended. Immediately before the National Maximum Speed Law became effective, speed limits were as high as 75 mph (121 km/h). (Kansas had lowered its turnpike speed limit from 80 mph (130 km/h) before 1974.) Montana and Nevada generally posted no speed limits on highways, limiting drivers to only whatever was safe for conditions.

Norman J. Levy

Norman J. Levy (January 24, 1931 – February 7, 1998) was an American lawyer and politician from New York. He served in the New York State Senate for 27 years, and was the sponsor of the first legislation in the United States mandating seat belt usage.

Norman Levy Park and Preserve

Norman Levy Park and Preserve is a man-made park on the South Shore of Long Island in Merrick, New York. The park is situated on a hill and has excellent views of the Manhattan skyline and Long Island. Norman Levy Park and Preserve was once a landfill but was transformed to a park space in 2000. The park is the highest point on Long Island's South Shore, and has an average altitude of around 120 feet. From this highest point, the New York City Skyline, Jones Beach, the Oceanside landfill, and more.The park has many groomed trails which take visitors to the top of the hill. Along the trails, there are many exercise stations for the more active visitors. For a more leisurely visit, one can take a tour around the park with one of the park rangers. This tour includes trip to the pier which extends into the bay, a view of Long Island's horizon, and a clear view of Manhattan Island. Other amenities include fishing, bird spotting, kayaking (June–August), and hiking. Dogs and pets are not allowed in the Park and Preserve.

The park has Nigerian dwarf goats that are walked around the trails multiple times a day by one of the park rangers. The goats keep the overgrowth of the grass, bushes, and weeds at bay. The park also has guinea fowl to control the tick population as an alternative to insecticides.The park is known as a peaceful mini getaway. It is great for families of all sizes who wish to spend a day walking trails or seeing animals. The preserve is home to a variety of animals such as goats, birds, foxes, etc. Foxes are rare to find, but more sightings have occurred in recent years.

Peter John Ryan

Peter John Ryan OAM, MS, FRCS, FRACS, FISA (Hon), (25 November 1925 – 3 June 2002) was a consultant surgeon at St Vincent's Hospital, Melbourne, Australia. He was born in Dookie, Victoria in 1925, and attended Assumption College, Kilmore. He qualified in medicine at the University of Melbourne in 1948. He led the first St Vincent’s Hospital civilian surgical team to work in Long Xuyen, Vietnam, from October 1965 - January 1966. In 1986 he was made Hunterian Professor of Surgery by the Royal College of Surgeons (London) and delivered his oration on diverticular disease. In 1988 he published "A Very Short Textbook of Surgery" (3rd edition, 1994, Chapman and Hall, London), and this was also translated into Indonesian and Mandarin. He also worked as an honorary consultant surgeon one morning per month for almost 20 years from 1981, at the VAHS (Victorian Aboriginal Health Service). He died from cancer on 3 June 2002.Ryan was President of the International Society of University Colon and Rectal Surgeons from 1986 to 1988 and colorectal cancer was a major medical study of his professional life. Ryan chaired the ISUCRS's Congress in Melbourne in 1980.

Another of his medical lifetime interests was road safety and driving. He was a founding member of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons' Road Trauma Committee, which was partially responsible for the introduction of compulsory seat belts in cars in Victoria, in 1970, the first state in the world to pass such a law (Seat belt legislation). In May 1965 Ryan supported a motion to investigate the causes of road accidents in Australia.In 1996 the Peter Ryan Prize for Surgical Research for final year St Vincent’s medical students was established in his honour.

Richard Nugent, Baron Nugent of Guildford

George Richard Hodges Nugent, Baron Nugent of Guildford, (6 June 1907 – 16 March 1994), known as Sir Richard Nugent, 1st Baronet between 1960 and 1966, was a British Conservative politician.

Risk compensation

Risk compensation is a theory which suggests that people typically adjust their behavior in response to the perceived level of risk, becoming more careful where they sense greater risk and less careful if they feel more protected. Although usually small in comparison to the fundamental benefits of safety interventions, it may result in a lower net benefit than expected.By way of example, it has been observed that motorists drove faster when wearing seatbelts and closer to the vehicle in front when the vehicles were fitted with anti-lock brakes. There is also evidence that the risk compensation phenomenon could explain the failure of condom distribution programs to reverse HIV prevalence and that condoms may foster disinhibition, with people engaging in risky sex both with and without condoms.

By contrast, shared space is a highway design method which consciously aims to increase the level of perceived risk and uncertainty, thereby slowing traffic and reducing the number of and seriousness of injuries.

Road toll (Australia and New Zealand)

Road toll is the term used in New Zealand and Australia for the number of deaths caused annually by road accidents.

Roads in Victoria

Victoria has the highest density of roads of any state in Australia. Unlike Australia's other mainland states where vast areas are very sparsely inhabited, Victoria has population centres spread out over most of the state, with only the far north-west and the Victorian Alps without permanent settlement. Population centres are linked by high quality highways and freeways. The state capital, Melbourne, has the most extensive freeway network in Australia.

VicRoads is responsible for road planning, motor vehicle registration, and driver licensing in Victoria. The Victorian government has set up a framework for the integration of transport facilities in the State. A number of private companies operate toll roads in the state.

Roads in Victoria are shared by a multitude of modes of transport, ranging from trucks to bicycles, public buses, trams, taxis as well as private cars of all types. Road safety is a primary concern of road authorities, including the police and government. Victoria was the first jurisdiction in the world to introduce compulsory seat belt legislation. Other measures introduced are drunk driving laws and speed cameras. Victorian road laws are constantly reviewed. The number of road fatalities recorded in Victoria for the year up to June 2011 was reported to be "significantly higher" than it was for the same period in 2010.

Seat belt

A seat belt (also known as a seatbelt or safety belt) is a vehicle safety device designed to secure a passenger of a vehicle against harmful movement that may result during a collision or a sudden stop. A seat belt reduces the likelihood of death or serious injury in a traffic collision by reducing the force of secondary impacts with interior strike hazards, by keeping occupants positioned correctly for maximum effectiveness of the airbag (if equipped) and by preventing occupants being ejected from the vehicle in a crash or if the vehicle rolls over.

When in motion, the driver and passengers are travelling at the same speed as the car. If the driver makes the car suddenly stop or crashes it, the driver and passengers continue at the same speed the car was going before it stopped. A seatbelt applies an opposing force to the driver and passengers to prevent them from falling out or making contact with the interior of the car. Seatbelts are considered Primary Restraint Systems (PRS), because of their vital role in occupant safety.

Seat belt laws in the United States

Most seat belt laws in the United States are left to the states and territories. However, the first seat belt law was a federal law, Title 49 of the United States Code, Chapter 301, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard, which took effect on January 1, 1968, that required all vehicles (except buses) to be fitted with seat belts in all designated seating positions. This law has since been modified to require three-point seat belts in outboard-seating positions, and finally three-point seat belts in all seating positions. Initially, seat belt use was voluntary. New York was the first state to pass a law which required vehicle occupants to wear seat belts, a law that came into effect on December 1, 1984. New Hampshire is the only state that has no enforceable laws for the wearing of seat belts in a vehicle.

Seat belt legislation in Canada

Seat belt legislation in Canada is left to the provinces. All provinces in Canada have primary enforcement seat belt laws, which allow a police officer to stop and ticket a driver if s/he observes a violation. Ontario was the first province to pass a law which required vehicle occupants to wear seat belts, a law that came into effect on January 1, 1976.

Seat belt use rates by country

This is a table of seat belt use rates (percent) in various countries worldwide.

Seat belt use rates metrics might be part of some safety process.

Traffic collision

A traffic collision, also called a motor vehicle collision (MVC) among other terms, occurs when a vehicle collides with another vehicle, pedestrian, animal, road debris, or other stationary obstruction, such as a tree, pole or building. Traffic collisions often result in injury, death, and property damage.

A number of factors contribute to the risk of collisions, including vehicle design, speed of operation, road design, road environment, and driver skill, impairment due to alcohol or drugs, and behavior, notably distracted driving, speeding and street racing. Worldwide, motor vehicle collisions lead to death and disability as well as financial costs to both society and the individuals involved.

In 2013, 54 million people worldwide sustained injuries from traffic collisions. This resulted in 1.4 million deaths in 2013, up from 1.1 million deaths in 1990. About 68,000 of these occurred in children less than five years old. Almost all high-income countries have decreasing death rates, while the majority of low-income countries have increasing death rates due to traffic collisions. Middle-income countries have the highest rate with 20 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, accounting for 80% of all road fatalities with 52% of all vehicles. While the death rate in Africa is the highest (24.1 per 100,000 inhabitants), the lowest rate is to be found in Europe (10.3 per 100,000 inhabitants).

Rules of the road
Road user guides
Speed limit
Moving violations
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Traffic violations reciprocity
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Road safety

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