USE AND EFFECTS OF SEAT-BELTS IN 21 COUNTRIES

The positive effect of seat belt use has been documented through several years. This report presents recent rates of wear and the latest documentation on the injury-reducing effect of seat belt wearing. The collected material presents variation in rates of wear by type of legislation, and clearly indicates that rates of wear are highest in countries where seat belt use is mandatory and non-use carries a penalty. The variations are wide and the legislations vary somewhat, but rates of wear under such conditions concentrate around 60-70% in urban areas and 75-85% in rural areas. The rates also seem to be influenced by continuous enforcement. The rates of wear in countries where seat belt use is mandatory but non-use carries no penalty vary from 15 to 36% in urban areas and from 40 to 63% in rural areas. In countries where seat belt wearing is voluntary, rates of wear are low, not much above 10% - unless important information campaigns are launched. The use of information campaigns to increase voluntary seat belt wearing seems to result in a rate of wear just above 30%, and important follow-up advertising is needed to keep it there. 70-80% of the populations favoured mandatory legislation when opinions on this were assessed. Non-usage is found to be associated with - among other factors - lower education and occupational status and also social problems. Seat belt wearing greatly reduces the number of fatalities and injuries. The injury reduction attributable to belt wearing according to recent findings confirm that serious and fatal injuries are reduced by 65-80% and moderate injuries by 40-60%. /TRRL/

  • Availability:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Norwegian Institute of Transport Economics

    Gransesvingen 7, P.O. Box 6110, Etterstad
    Oslo,   Norway  N-0602
  • Authors:
    • Berard-Andersen, K
  • Publication Date: 1978-1

Media Info

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00179945
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport and Road Research Laboratory (TRRL)
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Monograph, HS-033 468
  • Files: HSL, ITRD, TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 27 1982 12:00AM