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Belt up to stay safe on roads

Mary Glindon MP.
Mary Glindon MP.

Nothing personal, but belt up. I’m not being rude though.

This is the message from Northumbria Police, which wants to help keep the public strapped in, and more importantly, safe.

I’m old enough to remember when wearing seat belts was made compulsory with a campaign called ‘Clunk, Click Every Trip’.

There was some initial resentment to the introduction of this law, but most people now automatically strap in because it is very clear that seat belts save lives and reduce serious injuries.

But the message is not getting through to everyone.

Statistics show that drivers and passengers aged between 17 and 34 have the lowest seat belt wearing rates. However, it is also this age group that has the highest accident rates.

Figures show that you’re twice as likely to die if you don’t wear a seat belt.

The police rightly want to make sure drivers wear their seat belt at all times, even on short journeys, as this is often when people think it is ok to not wear one.

But their clear message is that it only takes a second to be involved in a collision.

The police campaign also highlights the new law about child seat belts.

This says that children must use a child seat until they’re 12 years old or 135cm tall, whichever comes first.

Children over 12 years of age, or more than 135cm tall, must also wear a seat belt.

For full details of the laws, when a child can travel without a car seat, fitting a child seat and types of child car seats, go to www.gov.uk/child-car-seats-the-rules