Seat belts are lifesavers
It should be no secret that Utah has laws requiring drivers and passengers in motor vehicles to wear safety restraints. According to state law, all persons are required to wear safety belts at all times.
Drivers who are 20 years of age and older who do not wear seat belts are considered to commit a secondary offense which does not warrant a stop. Drivers 19 and younger will be pulled over, if found not in compliance.
The goal of safety belt laws is to reduce fatalities. For teens, the most common cause of death is automobile accidents.
According to Lt. David Bennion, of the Utah Highway Patrol, Carbon and Emery counties are among the worst for compliance with that law. He noted that the rural atmosphere here is largely to blame. With many county residents driving pickup trucks or SUVs, there is a sense of invulnerability about them.
The two demographics which tend to slack on the law are young teens and older or seasoned drivers, aged 55 and older. Parents who start their children on the idea that wearing safety belts is the right thing to do often have more success with their children continuing that habit. The idea of getting teens to wear seat belts starts at home.
The UHP, as well as other police entities, issue citations for restraint violations as a wake-up call that the devices need to be worn.