POLICE are urging all motorists to stay safe and use their seatbelts at the start of a nationwide campaign.
The campaign aims to ensure drivers are using their seatbelts and child restraints correctly and to crack down on offenders who continue to break the law.
It’s well documented that seatbelts are a significant safety factor in road collisions and the injuries that result from them.
In the UK it is a legal requirement for drivers and passengers to wear a seatbelt, unless they have an exemption.
It is also the driver’s legal responsibility to ensure any passenger under 14 year-old is using the appropriate child restraint or an adult seatbelt.
During the past two years in West Mercia nine people have been killed and 14 seriously injured in collisions where a seatbelt has not been worn.
“Supporting this national campaign with local activities and increased enforcement is an important way of raising the issue and highlighting the dangers of not wearing a seat belt,” said West Mercia Superintendent Melanie Crowther.
“National studies have shown drivers and passengers aged 17 to 34 have the lowest seatbelt-wearing rate, combined with the highest collision rate, which is of great concern.”
Drivers and passengers who fail to wear seatbelts in the front and back of vehicles are breaking the law and face an on-the-spot fine of £100.
If prosecuted, the maximum fine can be up to £500.