Archive for Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Groups urge Kansas Senate to consider primary seat belt law

February 9, 2010, 9:46 a.m. Updated February 9, 2010, 9:46 a.m.


— Save lives. Reduce damage. Get federal money.

Those were the three main reasons given Tuesday in support of Kansas passing a primary seat belt law.

Car makers, insurance companies and law enforcement testified in support of Senate Bill 483. The bill would allow law enforcement to stop a motorist for not wearing a seat belt. Currently, seat belt violations are secondary, which means that law enforcement can ticket an unbelted motorist only if they are first stopped for another infraction.

Experience from other states shows that passage of a primary seat belt law will increase seat belt usage by 10 percent, resulting in saving about 30 lives and 300 incapacitating injuries per year in Kansas, supporters of the bill said.

Passage of the bill also will provide Kansas with approximately $11 million in additional federal transportation funds.

The measure was approved in the Senate in 2009 but died in the House. Some have expressed fears that if passed, the law would be disproportionately used against minorities.

The Senate Transportation Committee took the bill under consideration.


purplesage 7 years ago

Get federal money - State's #1 reason Reduce damage - Insurance company's #1 reason Save lives - a nice bonus of the first 2.

People should wear seat belts, motorcycle helmets, not smoke and what about the really big one - not drink. It contributes to more death and damage than the rest put together. Good luck with any of the above.

somedude20 7 years ago

I can understand going after cigs and alchol as they can kill more than just the person using them (secondhand smoke/ drunk drive, ect) but seatbelts, come on. I am having a hard time trying to think of one instance when a person not wearing a seatbelt injured someone other than himself. This is just an excuse to be able to pull a person over

ralphralph 7 years ago

"Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the Government's purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."

gatekeeper 7 years ago

Look at it this way. All the idiots that don't wear seat belts are costing the rest of us money. If you have insurance - the company and therefore all their other customers pay the price of your not wearing a seatbelt. If you don't have insurance - the taxpayer pays for your not wearing a seatbelt. Our tax $'s are used for emergency personell to scrape them off the roads when they're thrown from their vehicles. If the person survives, good chance we pay for their monthly disability check. And think of their family members, who now have to help care for a paraplegic or quadraplegic. If there are others in the car, the person not wearing the seat belt can injur them when they're thrown from their seat.

A stat from 2002 showed that fatalities and accidents involving those not wearing seat belts cost the U.S. approximately $20 billion per year. Of that cost, 74% of the tab is paid for by the public.

There are many reasons why seat belt use should be enforced.

denak 7 years ago

"....Some have expressed fears that if passed, the law would be disproportionately used against minorities...."

Oh really, and just how would this law be used against minorities? I really find that statement insulting. Aren't the lives of minorities just as important as the lives of white people.? OR are they saying that minorities shouldn't be held to the same standard or that they are less responsible. Sheesh.

Personally, I'm not sure if not wearing a seat belt should be a primary reason to stop a motorists even though I think the motorists is being irresponsible. But I would love it if not having your children restrained properly was a primary reason. I honestly don't know if it is or not, but if it isn't, I wish our legislature would pass that law before this proposed one.


gccs14r 7 years ago

"I am having a hard time trying to think of one instance when a person not wearing a seatbelt injured someone other than himself."

Once you get thrown from the driver's seat, you're just a passenger in an unguided land missile. The seatbelt keeps you planted so you still have some chance of keeping your car from killing someone. Besides, if you're unbelted you can either drive or try to hold yourself in your seat, but you can't do both at once.

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