california seatbelt law | Northern California Personal Injury Blog
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) campaign promoting seatbelt safety during the Thanksgiving holiday season began on November 15 and will last until November 28. The campaign, simply titled “Buckle Up,” aims to educate Americans of the importance of wearing a seatbelt, particularly since many people will be traveling to be with friends and family during this time.
According to the NHTSA, about 85 percent of Americans use their seatbelts regularly. However, this still means about 45 million people don’t buckle up when they get into a motor vehicle. On average, about 38 occupants in passenger vehicles who aren’t wearing their seatbelts are killed in traffic accidents every day. It is estimated by the NHTSA that around 13,000 unbuckled passenger vehicle occupants died in motor vehicle crashes in 2008. Roughly one third of those lives could have been saved if they had been wearing their seatbelt.
During the 2008 Thanksgiving holiday season (November 17 until December 1), 1,120 occupants in passenger vehicles were killed in traffic accidents. Sadly, more than half of those killed weren’t wearing their seatbelts at the time of the accident. Statistics from the NHTSA show that teens are the least likely to buckle up, followed by young adults, males, nighttime riders, motorists traveling on rural roads, and occupants in pickup trucks.
According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), all occupants of a motor vehicle are required to wear their seatbelts. The fine for not doing so is $20 and each subsequent offense is fined $50. The court may also order a person who has violated the seatbelt law to attend traffic school or another court-approved program to learn about the proper use of seatbelts.
The San Francisco personal injury attorneys at Balamuth Harrington, LLP remind you to travel safely during the Thanksgiving holiday season and to always wear your seatbelt. Doing so could save you from personal injury or death.
If you have been injured in a car accident in San Francisco, you may be able to receive compensation for your injuries. To find out more information about your legal options, please contact our San Francisco accident lawyers for a free consultation. Call us today at 1-888-254-1234.
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