Cuomo signs legislation requiring passengers 16+ to wear seat belts in front, back seats

The new law takes effect Nov. 1.

News 12 Staff

Aug 11, 2020, 3:40 PM

Updated 1,387 days ago

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation Tuesday requiring all motor vehicle passengers 16 and older to wear a seat belt in the front and back seats.
Currently, passengers who are 16 and older are only required to wear a seat belt in the front passenger seat next to the driver.
"We've known for decades that seat belts save lives and with this measure we are further strengthening our laws and helping to prevent needless tragedies," Gov. Cuomo said. "It was under my father's leadership that New York became the first state in the country to pass a seat belt law, and the nation followed his lead. Now we are building upon this legacy and helping to create a safer and stronger Empire State for all."
The Governor's Traffic Safety Committee says 30% of highway deaths in New York are occupants unrestrained by a seat belt. Safety experts believe that the use of a backseat seat belt could prevent over two-thirds of fatalities and serious injuries resulting from crashes.
Robert Sinclair Jr., a spokesman for AAA Northeast, says the bottom line is safety.
"Since 2010, there have been over 300 adults killed in the backseat,” he said. “And we describe adults as anyone over the age of 16. When you combine that with those seriously injured, that comes out to 2,500.”
The new law takes effect Nov. 1.
 


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