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Is It Proper to Put someone in jail for a seatbelt violation Essay

Project id 1000314
Subject area Writing
Document type Essay
Words 2614
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States across the country have seat belt laws in place that make it a requirement for passengers and drivers in vehicles that are being operated on public roads to wear some sort of safety belt. Back in 1998, 41,471 people were killed in 6,334,000 reported motor vehicle injuries in the United States. Seat belts are estimated to save 9,500 lives annually, and statistics show a greater degree of seat-belt use in countries that vigorously enforce seat belt legislation. The legislation, in addition to the punishments available for breach of the laws vary by state. In most states, however, it is considered a misdemeanor and punishable by a small fine. The properness of an arrest for these offenses is a Fantastic question and has been addressed by various courts including the Supreme Court. Back in North Carolina, the “Click It or Ticket” program was put into place in 1993 by former Governor Jim Hunt to increase safety belt and child safety utilization rates through stepped up enforcement of the state’s safety belt legislation. According to North Carolina’s safety belt law all drivers and front seat passengers over the age of 16 are required to wear safety belts. Children less than age 16 are covered under the North Carolina Child Restraint Law. This law requires that children have to be buckled up no matter where they're seated in the vehicle. Violators of the safety belt law are issued tickets and are subject to a fine of $25 plus $50 court costs. These violations have been defined as “infractions” and are not entered on driving records. In addition to this, effective January 1, 2005, any child less than 8 years old or 80 pounds in weight must ride in a booster seat. Violations of this law will result in a $25 fine plus court costs as well as having 2 points placed against driver’s license. However, drivers cited for this violation of this law for a 5,6, or 7 year old will be able to have the charges dismissed if they present proof to the court they have acquired an appropriate restraint for that child. Statistics have been gathered on safety belt use since this program began and has proven that seat belt use has increased from 65 percent to 84 percent. In addition, it has proven that fatal and serious injuries in North Carolina have been cut by 14 percent. Leading to a savings of at least $135 million in health care related costs. Other positive ef...

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