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Local Law Enforcement Stepping Up Seat Belt Enforcement

Valley County Sheriff’s Office, Glasgow Police Department, Valley County DUI Task Force, and the Montana Highway Patrol (MHP) encourage all Montanans to buckle up, even for short trips or when driving slowly. Increased patrols and enforcement of seat belt laws will be underway across the state to ensure the safety of all road users. Valley County Sheriff’s Office, Glasgow Police Department, Valley County DUI Task Force MHP, and the Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) are committed to public safety, including seat belt safety.

Montana law requires all vehicle occupants to be properly restrained with a seat belt or in a child safety restraint. A ticket can be issued if the driver or any passenger is found to not be wearing a seatbelt. Additionally, if a person in a vehicle who is under six years of age and weighs less than 60 lbs. is believed not to be restrained properly, law enforcement agents may require a driver to stop.

“Fastening a seat belt takes less than two seconds,” Valley County Undersheriff Chris Richter. “It’s the simplest and most crucial way to reduce your risk of serious injury or death in a crash. There’s a misconception that trucks provide more safety. But seat belts are proven to be even more effective at reducing serious injury and death in a light truck, pickup, or van.”

In fact, in 2021, 61 percent of pickup truck occupants who were killed weren’t wearing a seat belt. Of the 73 fatalities due to being ejected from their pickup in 2020, 67, or 92 percent, were not wearing a seatbelt. Seat belts have a proven record of keeping occupants inside the vehicle, increasing the likelihood of survival in a serious crash.

“Please make a habit of always buckling up,” Glasgow Police Chief Rober Weber. “The more it’s second nature, the easier it is to do it all the time. For those driving with children, it’s important to model positive behavior by buckling up before starting your vehicle. This encourages children to adopt the habit of wearing a seatbelt and increase their likelihood of surviving a crash.”

Montana Department of Transportation — Vision Zero

This is a Vision Zero message from the Montana Department of Transportation. This and other enforcement and educational campaigns are strategies to reach Vision Zero — zero deaths and zero serious injuries on Montana roadways. For more information about Vision Zero, contact Tammy Ross, Montana Department of Transportation, 406-444-9192 or [email protected].


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