NEWS- RCMP demo highlights importance of seatbelt safety

September 20, 2012– Athabasca RCMP’s Sergeant Brian Scott was on hand at the County Public Works yard to demonstrate the importance of wearing a seatbelt.

With the police rollover simulation unit in tow, Scott showed the difference wearing a seatbelt makes during a crash.

This image shows how quickly an unbuckled person can be ejected from a vehicle during a rollover.

Using a seat belt is the most effective way to reduce the chance of injury or death in a motor vehicle collision. In Alberta, every person traveling in a motor vehicle must wear a seat belt or use a child safety seat. The penalty for seat belt infractions is a fine of $115.

Proper use of seat belts

  • Drivers must ensure that passengers under the age of 16 are buckled up. Young children under six years of age and 18 kilograms or less must travel in the appropriate child safety seats. If a child is not correctly restrained the driver is responsible for paying the appropriate fine.
  • A typical seat belt consists of a lap and shoulder belt. The shoulder belt should be worn closely against the body, over the shoulder and across the chest, never under the arm or behind the back. The lap belt should be firm against the body and low across the hips.
  • A seat belt should not be worn twisted, as the full width of the belt is required to spread motor vehicle collision forces across the body.
  • While a child can start using a seatbelt alone once he/she is six years old or weighs over 18 kilograms it is recommended that the child be in a booster seat until they turn nine or reach a weight of 37 kilograms.
  • Air bags do not replace a seat belt. They do not prevent drivers and passengers from being thrown from the car.