Drivers and passengers urged to always ‘belt up’ by Warwickshire Road Safety Partnership

Wearing a seatbelt doesn't take a brain surgeonSQUARE
Warwickshire Road Safety Partnership is urging the public to always wear a seatbelt as part of a four week operation to educate and catch drivers committing the ‘Fatal 4’ offences. Not wearing a seatbelt, drink and drug driving, speeding and using a handheld mobile phone are called the Fatal 4 because they significantly contribute to collisions, injuries and fatalities. Almost everyone believes they are a better driver than the next person and do not believe they will ever be in a collision, but unfortunately officers know otherwise. Wearing a seatbelt reduces your risk of death as a driver by 50%. Just because nothing happened last time you didn’t wear a seatbelt doesn’t reduce the risk. You were just lucky. When you have a collision your seatbelt holds you in position so that your airbag can work effectively. In a car if you are not wearing a seatbelt, if you brake hard say at 30mph, your body will want to continue travelling forward at 30mph. You will not be able to hang on to the steering wheel. It’s also important for passengers to sit up in a car and not lie down or put your feet up as this can increase the level of injury in a collision. It doesn’t matter how familiar or long the journey, the risks of not wearing a seatbelt are the same. During the operation, Warwickshire Road Safety Partnership will be sharing information like this on social media to encourage seatbelt use, the risks posed by the Fatal 4 and the penalties drivers and passengers will face when they are caught. Officers will be increasing their presence on the county’s roads to look for drivers who choose not to wear a seatbelt, to speed, use a handheld mobile or drink or drug drive. Statistics tell us that it is mostly males aged 25-59 years old travelling in LGVs, HGVs and cars who choose not to belt up and that’s why our Op Tramline partnership with National Highways is so important. The elevated position provided by the Op Tramline supercab allows officers to easily see driver behaviours in even the tallest HGV. In 2022 79 seatbelt offences were detected using on Op Tramline on A roads and motorways across Warwickshire. It’s not just adults who need to be safely secured in a vehicle. Children should be seated in an appropriate child car seat restraint and parents should try to make sure children wearing a seatbelt sit upright for their seatbelt to work effectively, even if they fall asleep. Sergeant Chris McSharry said “Warwickshire Road Safety Partnership has a target to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads by 50% by 2030 but we need your help if we are to see a reduction in collisions and injuries in Warwickshire. We are asking drivers and passengers – to please make it a habit to check everyone is wearing a seatbelt before travelling because a seatbelt is one of the simplest and most effective things you can do to reduce the risk of injury in a collision. “If you are on a night out, don’t forget it’s your car so your rules – Please make sure all your passengers wear a seatbelt.” You can follow the operation on social media @WarwickshirePolice @WarwickshireRoadSafety (F) and @WarksPolice @WarksRoadSafety (X) Search #OpFatalFails The Law Drivers may get a fine of £500 if they or a child under 14 in the vehicle is not wearing a seatbelt or appropriate child restraint as required by law. If you are 14 years old or over, as a passenger you are responsible for always wearing a seatbelt if there is one available and could be fined for not wearing one. For more information Seat belts: the law: Overview – GOV.UK ( Child car seats: the law: Using a child car seat or booster seat – GOV.UK ( Warwickshire Road Safety Partnership encourages businesses to sign up to the free Driving for Better Business programme to help employers reduce work-related road risk including wearing seatbelts. This helps protect staff who drive or ride for work, and others who they may share the road with. For more information follow click here.