Dorset And Hampshire Police In Seatbelt Campaign

The South Coast's police will be watching out for anyone not wearing their seatbelt all this week - as part of a Europe-wide campaign to cut the number of deaths and injuries.

Dorset officers will be outside schools at drop-off time, checking children have theirs on and that car seats are properly fitted.

Hampshire Police say they'll be out every day to catch those not wearing one - after four deaths were put down to it last year.

The number of children killed or seriously injured in traffic collisions has risen nationally for the first time in 20 years. Findings show that two in every three child seats are not fitted correctly.
 
The international campaign will be running from Monday 9 March to Sunday 15 March 2015 and will see officers from Dorset Police attending a number of local schools at morning drop-off times to enforce seatbelt and child seat laws.
 
Traffic Inspector Matt Butler said:

“Motorists and passengers who fail to wear their seatbelts while driving will be targeted in a week-long campaign.
 
“Although we are achieving our child casualty reduction targets, 189 children were injured in collisions in Dorset last year. That is 189 too many.
 
"Wearing a seatbelt is a very simple action which drivers and passengers can carry out to increase their safety on the roads. As part of the campaign we will also be educating people about the dangers of not fitting child seats correctly.
 
“It is the responsibility of the driver to ensure everyone being carried in that vehicle is correctly restrained so please, take the time to ensure your child seat is properly installed and that everyone who gets into your vehicle is belted up safely”.
 
Any motorists needing advice on the fitting of child seats can contact their local authority road safety department, or attend any of the free car seat check sessions held by Bournemouth Road Safety Department.
 
Free car seat check sessions are being held between 11am and 4pm at the Littledown Centre, Bournemouth on:
 
Monday 9 March 2015
Thursday 4 June 2015
Tuesday 4 August 2015
Tuesday 24 November 2015
 
As Police in Hampshire take part in the Europe wide seatbelt enforcement campaign this week (March 9-15), a report into road safety shows that the number of people killed or seriously injured would reduce substantially if they recognised the risks.

The review was collated by the Joint Thames Valley and Hampshire Roads Policing Unit, and the enforcement week focuses on one of the 'fatal four' the non-wearing of seat belts, and the devastating effect it has on lives.

Hampshire's Road Safety Officer, Sergeant Rob Heard said:

"Evidence from this report shows that there is still a need for us to crackdown on those who don't wear their seatbelt when travelling in a vehicle.

Whilst the vast majority of people are wearing their seatbelts; unfortunately some people are becoming complacent and feel a collision will never happen to them.

In some cases they feel that because they are driving locally and at a low speed they will be ok. However research has shown that many collisions occur at low speed and within in few miles of home.

"You are twice as likely to die in a collision if you are not wearing a seatbelt and in the event of an accident if unrestrained, you will hit the windscreen, or the front seat in the case of a rear seat passenger at a force of 30 to 60 times your own body weight.

"We prosecuted 770 people last year for failing to wear seat belts, and whilst the stats show that is down on figures from 2013, serious and in some cases fatal injuries would have been prevented if they had had theirs on.

"However the number of people reported killed or seriously injured on Britain's roads has increased by 4% to 24,360 in 2014 from 23,439 in 2013. Worryingly the KSI child causalities (0 - 15 years) has increased by 3% to 2060 in year ending September 2014.

"This is the first time this has happened in two decades. It has been identified that the majority of car seats across the UK are incorrectly fitted, where two in every three are not fitted properly. This may be contributing to the sharp rise in child road death and injuries.

"I would always recommend to people to wear a seat belt every time you travel in a vehicle, it's just not worth the risk."

The enforcement week will run in the UK until the end of Sunday and officers from Hampshire's Roads Policing Unit will be out each day looking for those failing to comply with the seatbelt law.

Injury collisions in Hampshire where it has been proven that failing to wear a seatbelt was the reason for the injury are as follows:

2012
Fatal - 3
Serious - 0
Slight - 5

2013
Fatal - 5
Serious - 2
Slight - 0

2014
Fatal - 4
Serious - 0
Slight - 0

Since 1983 it's been law to wear a seatbelt in a vehicle expect in a few rare exceptions. You can find out more about Seatbelts and the Facts on the THINK campaign web site at http://think.direct.gov.uk/seat-belts.html

For advice on the law with Child seatbelts and fitting see http://think.direct.gov.uk/education/early-years-and-primary/parents/3-to-5s/child-car-seats-and-safety-belts/

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