Traffic Bureau ยป Seatbelt Law

Traffic Bureau

Seat Belt Law

New Jerseys primary seatbelt law now authorizes police officers to stop and issue a motor vehicle summons to drivers and front seat passengers solely for not wearing their seatbelts!

Why have a primary seat belt law?

  • Studies show seat belts do save lives and reduce injuries during crashes.
  • More than 2,000 unbuckled drivers and front seat passengers died on New Jersey's roadways in the past 10 years.
  • New Jersey's seat belt use rate is below the national average.

The new primary seat belt law

  • Does not increase the existing fine for not wearing a seat belt.
  • Does not add points to a driver's motor vehicle record.
  • Does not create a new surcharge or additional payment fees.
  • Applies to all passenger vehicles that are required to be equipped with seat belts.
  • Applies to drivers and front seat passengers.
  • Continues the existing requirement that the driver is responsible for seat belt use by front seat passengers who are under the age of 18.

New Jersey's child passenger law

The new law which took effect in December 2001, requires the following:

  • Children under 8 years old and weighing less than 80 pounds must be secured in the back seat of a motor vehicle in an approved booster seat using the lap and shoulder belt.
  • If there is no back seat (such as a pick up truck), the child must be secured in the front seat in the same manner as the back, with the seat pushed back as far as possible.
  • Children over 8 years of age and weighing more than 80 pounds are required to wear a seatbelt anywhere in a motor vehicle.
  • Children under 12 should ride in the back seat of a motor vehicle whenever possible

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