Bill to require backseat passengers to wear seat belts

Local

Governor Andrew Cuomo is pushing for a law that would require all backseat passengers to wear seat belts. This is the second push the governor has made to expand the driving safety law.

In 2017, there were nearly 40 backseat passengers killed across the state of New York who weren’t wearing seat belts.

“We call it back seat bullets. They actually become projectiles in the vehicle,” said Staff Sergeant Terrance McDonald. 

New York was the first state to have seat belt laws back in 1984. Since then, there have been small changes like the “Click-It or Ticket” program. Some say New York has fallen behind the 28 other states and D.C. with laws requiring backseat passengers to wear a seat belt.

“We’ve been trying to get this to happen for 25 years,” McDonald said.

McDonald said, before “Click-It or Ticket” campaign, about 25 percent of people didn’t wear seat belts; now only about seven percent don’t.

“You get 50 percent compliance just passing a law, without enforcing a thing. We say enforcing this law will get half of those people. We’re now down to 3.5 percent,” McDonald said.

Lawmakers vote on the governor’s proposed bill April 1.

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