A proposal in the Utah Senate would permit police
to pull over drivers who are not buckled up.
The bill, sponsored by Sen. Karen Hale, D-Midvale,
would create a primary law for seat-belt enforcement. Currently, police can
ticket drivers and passengers older than age 19 for seat-belt violations only
after stopping a vehicle for another traffic violation.
However, such violations are a primary offense for
anyone 19 and younger who is not belted.
If signed into law, it would put Utah in line for
additional federal money.
The Bush administration recently proposed an
incentive program to encourage states to increase seat-belt enforcement. The
program would provide grants worth $100 million a year for highway safety or
construction programs to states that pass a primary seat-belt law or show a
seat-belt-usage rate of at least 90 percent.
to do one or the other would result in a loss of up to 4 percent of federal
highway funds to the state.
Utah is one of about 30 states without a primary
SB71 has been forwarded to the Senate
Transportation and Public Utilities and Technology Committee.