Maryland Seat Belt Law

Last year we wrote an article which pointed out changes to Maryland’s cell phone law. At the same time the law changed in regards to cell phone use while driving, the law also was changed and updated in regards to seat belt use.

Maryland’s Seat Belt Law

The Maryland Highway Safety Office has launched a website to educate citizens about car accidents. Additionally, the National Institute of Health has provided information about the seat belt law where it gives the main points of the law:

  • Maryland has a primary seat belt law for front seat occupants and a secondary seat belt law for back seat occupants.
  • Tickets can be issued to drivers and front seat passengers even if no other violation is observed.
  • Each person that is not buckled up (driver and passenger) may receive a ticket of up to $50 for not wearing a seat belt.
  • In the case where any passenger under the age of 16 years of age is not buckled up, the driver will receive a ticket for each offense. For instance, if a driver is stopped and not wearing a seat belt, and a passenger under the age of 16 is also not restrained, the driver will receive a $50 adult seat belt ticket for himself and a $50 ticket for the passenger.

Seat Belts Save Lives

The single best defense against death in a car accident is to put on a seat belt, and to require every person in your car to wear a seat belt as well. When worn, lap and shoulder belts lower the risk of death to passengers in the front seat by 45 percent. Seat belts also reduce moderate to critical injuries by 50% [1]

It’s not just drivers who need to wear seat belts. 13 to 15 year-olds are the most likely to die in a car accident when not wearing a seat belt. They have a 67% risk of death in crashes when they don’t wear seat belts. That’s the highest percentage of all age groups. Additionally, when a passenger sitting behind the driver is un-belted, it increases the chance of the driver experiencing a moderate to fatal injury by 50%.

Wear a seat belt. Insist that others do as well. Doing so will keep everybody safe.

What can you do?

  • Put down the phone when you drive.
  • Drive Defensively – Just because you don’t drive recklessly doesn’t mean others aren’t as cautious.
  • Ride Responsibly – Always ask the driver to put down the phone, and ask others to buckle up.
  • Buckle Up – Every single time.
  • Set a Good Example – Don’t send the message that unbuckled driving or distracted driving is safe.

We share the dream of a zero fatality Maryland. Please do your part by protecting yourself and those who ride with you. We can do it together.

What if you’ve been hurt in an accident?

No matter what the conditions of your car accident, you still have rights. It is vitally important you speak with a car accident lawyer as soon as possible to find out what those rights are, and what to expect. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help. The car accident lawyers at Ingerman & Horwitz are ready to lend a hand and give solid advice. Even if you weren’t wearing a seat belt, you still have legal rights.