Buckle Up or Pay Up
Beginning at midnight (June 30), police officers in Florida can pull drivers over if they’re not buckled up.
Right now, officers have to have another reason to pull over a driver in order to ticket them for not wearing a seat belt. The new law is expected to save the lives of 124 Floridians every year, according to the Capitol News Service.
By implementing the new seat belt law before July 1, the state will receive $35 million of federal money. The money will be used to make Florida’s roads safer and to spread the word about buckling up.
Florida is the 27th state to adopt a primary seat belt law.
“We just have to see you’re not wearing that seatbelt, and we’ll pull you over and issue a citation," said Lt. Tim Frith with the Florida Highway Patrol.
The fine for not wearing a seat belt is $30, but after fees and court costs, you could pay as much as $120. Many people will learn the hard way.
Nationally, about 20 percent of drivers don’t wear their seat belts, according to the news service.
The new law is expected to keep 1,700 people from serious injury. It will also save the state an estimated $400 million in emergency response and medical costs.
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