Archive for Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Senate panel endorses primary seat belt law for Kansas

Bill allows law enforcement to pull someone over simply for not wearing seat belt

February 16, 2010, 7:34 a.m. Updated February 16, 2010, 5:02 p.m.

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— A bill strengthening Kansas’ seat belt law has won first-round approval in the state Senate.

Senators advanced the bill Tuesday on a voice vote. A second, final vote will determine whether the measure goes to the House.

The bill would allow law enforcement officers to stop a driver solely for not wearing a seat belt. Under current law, an officer must stop someone for another violation, such as speeding, before issuing a seat belt citation.

The bill also would double the fine for not wearing a seat belt to $60, starting June 30.

Also, anyone 14 or older in the car would have to wear seat belts. Current law only requires adults in front seats to buckle up.

Children under 14 are covered by a special child passenger safety law.

Comments

OutlawJHawk 5 years, 3 months ago

Great ideas, but should not these officials be focused on the State budget crisis...

Alexander Neighbors 5 years, 3 months ago

Wow....... State legislator is focused on stupid items. 85% of kansas have no health insurance and they are debating seat belts.....

kansasredlegs 5 years, 3 months ago

85% of Kansans have no health insurance? Really? Got something to back that up?

Stuart Evans 5 years, 3 months ago

this has nothing to do with saving lives. it is just another opportunity for government to barge into our private lives and assess a fee.

ralphralph 5 years, 3 months ago

The actual and practical result of a primary seatbelt law is not merely that it would "allow law enforcement officers to stop a driver solely for not wearing a seat belt", but that it would allow an officer to stop a driver if the officer claims that he had "a reasonable suspicion that the driver might not be wearing a seatbelt" .... which is to say, that such a law basically allows the police to stop anyone, anywhere, any time, for any reason ... or no reason at all. Believe it.

This is bad policy.

gccs14r 5 years, 3 months ago

If you're that paranoid, get a flourescent orange cover for the shoulder harness so there's no question that you're wearing your seat belt. Put some cameras in the car, too, so you can show the judge just how you're being persecuted.

ralphralph 5 years, 3 months ago

Not paranoid ... just been around long enough to know that's how it will work ... and to know that there is a value in having a zone of personal privacy which the State cannot invade without some fairly good reason.

If we are that worried about people hurting themselves in wrecks, why don't we try enforcing the traffic laws so that we can focus on preventing the crashes rather than mitigating the injuries. Factors like speeding, following too closely, not using turn signals, etc., contribute mightily to the number of accidents. Ask yourself how many people you see NOT using turn signals, and whether you ever hear or see anything, ever, about that law being enforced.
We have actual driving rules, that are the actual cause of actual collisions. Let's work on those.

somedude20 5 years, 3 months ago

novelty lighters- banned k2- almost banned having to wear a seatbelt (because so many second-hand deaths occur when a non-seatbelt wearing individuals fly through the air and kill another) but: leaving the scene of an accident/hit and run (with a fatality) due to the driver being drunk only to get a slap on the wrist instead of tougher laws because the Kansas Legislature was wasting its time with stupid hillbilly laws- priceless

gccs14r 5 years, 3 months ago

"We have actual driving rules, that are the actual cause of actual collisions."

Rules cause collisions. Got it. (Maybe you want to rephrase what you said.)

What about the unbelted driver using the steering wheel as a handle to try to stay in his seat, instead of using the wheel to steer the vehicle, hurtling uncontrolled into traffic?

gccs14r 5 years, 3 months ago

"Not paranoid … just been around long enough to know that's how it will work"

Yes, because that's such a problem in states that have a primary seatbelt law. I have news for you: the police can find probable cause to pull you over without having to try very hard, even without a seatbelt law. Dirty windows, burned-out light, obscured registration sticker, crossing the lane divider, stopping in the crosswalk, late signalling, loose trim--you name it, they can pull you over for it if they want to.

ralphralph 5 years, 3 months ago

Every time something like this creeps into law, a little bit of your freedom is chipped away. Before you know, you look up and find your freedom is all but gone. It's all this well-intended "small stuff" that adds up over time ... you have to stand up to each little bit as it comes up.

ralphralph 5 years, 3 months ago

Don't take my word for it; here's what my friend Louie had to say:

"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."
-- Justice Louis Brandeis

julz 5 years, 3 months ago

the simple act of buckling up your seatbelt increases your chances of surviving a crash by 40 - 60%

Liberty275 5 years, 3 months ago

It's nice to know the government loves me so much they are willing to take away my money to help me forget how to think for myself.

Note to politicians, I know when I need a seatbelt. I don't need your advice or coercion regarding the matter.

Liberty275 5 years, 3 months ago

"the simple act of buckling up your seatbelt increases your chances of surviving a crash by 40 - 60%"

The simple act of not wrecking increases your chances of survival to 100%.

gccs14r 5 years, 3 months ago

"The simple act of not wrecking increases your chances of survival to 100%."

Let me know when you figure out how to guarantee that no one else will ever run into you.

Tom McCune 5 years, 3 months ago

This is a victimless crime that is unconstitutional under at least one state constitution. (New Hampshire)

I always wear my seatbelt, but I despise any law that infringes my liberty to not wear it when alone in my own car, if that is what I choose to do.

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