New York’s New Seat Belt Law Requires Passengers Who are 16 Years of Age or Older to Wear Seat Belts When Riding in the Back Seat of a Motor Vehicle Began November 1, 2020.
According to an online news report posted on newyork.cbslocal.com, on November 1, 2020, New York’s new seat belt law requiring seat belt usage in the back seat for passengers 16 years or older went into effect.
Passengers under age 16 were already required to wear a seat belt by state law.
Last August, the new seat belt law was signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo. The back seat safety belt law applies to all personal cars, taxis, and ridesharing services such as Lyft and Uber. Violators, including the driver of the vehicle, may receive a $50 fine for a first-time violation.
According to Governor Cuomo’s office, 30% of New York’s highway deaths were unrestrained passengers. Other studies have revealed that 90% of adults wear a seat belt while riding in the front seat. However, only 76% of adults wear a seat belt while riding in the back seat. The percentage of adults who wear a seat belt in for-hire vehicles is much lower.
The new legislation allows police officers to stop motor vehicles to see if the back seat passenger is wearing a seat belt. In states like New Jersey, the back seat “seat belt law” may only be enforced when a motor vehicle has been stopped for different reasons. Thirty states now have laws mandating seat belt usage in the back seat.
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