Safety Implications of Changing to a Primary Enforcement Seat Belt Law
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In 1984, New York became the first state to enact a mandatory seat belt law; since then, the District of Columbia and every state except New Hampshire have adopted similar laws. Of the 49 states with seat belt laws, eight states included in their original seat belt laws primary enforcement provisions, which allow police to stop a driver solely on the basis of not wearing a seat belt (New York, Hawaii, North Carolina, Texas, Connecticut, Iowa, New Mexico, and Oregon). During the 1990s, beginning with California, nine states upgraded their seat belt enforcement provisions from secondary to primary. According to a recent survey of nearly 2000 adults conducted by the Insurance Research Council, there is considerable public support for primary and secondary seat belt enforcement: 47% of the survey respondents indicated support for primary enforcement, while 41% of respondents favored secondary enforcement.
Richardson, L. E. (2001) Safety Implications of Changing to a Primary Enforcement Seat Belt Law. Retrieved 10-15-09, from http://www.truman.missouri.edu/ipp/publications/index.asp?ViewBy=Date