Queensland Police targets seatbelts in new campaign

Authorities to commit extra resources over two weeks to target drivers not wearing seatbelts

February 25, 2013

Queensland Police will commit extra resources over two weeks to targeting drivers not wearing seatbelts, amid claims road users are ignoring safety messages.

The police operation will run from today until March 10, with officers using static and mobile enforcement activities, increasing on-road numbers and deploying marked and unmarked vehicles to catch offenders.

Chief Superintendent Andy Morrow says caught failing to wear a seatbelt will incur a $330 fine and three demerit points.

He says 8 percent of all fatalities on Queensland roads in 2012 were due to crashes involving drivers or passengers not wearing seatbelts.

Morrow says initial investigations suggest a failure to wear a seatbelt has been a contributing factor in seven road deaths this year – 15 percent of the 2013 road toll.

The Queensland Government says the police operation will accompany a public education campaign made up of television and radio commercials and billboard advertising across the state.

"The seatbelt is the single most effective feature in a vehicle to reduce the severity of injuries to people in a crash…It should be second nature, but the message is simply not getting through to some people," Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson says.

"I was concerned to read recent media reports on studies which show the number of people who admit to speeding, not wearing a seatbelt, texting or drink-driving."

Police Minister Jack Dempsey says an average of 33 people have died each year when not wearing their seatbelt.

"If you are involved in a crash, the simple fact is that without a seatbelt to hold your body back, your internal organs continue travelling forwards with greater force and can do more damage," he says.

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