Seat belts often mean the difference between life and death; however, many drivers and passengers do not give their seatbelts much thought. Georgia’s seat belt laws keep hundreds of people from dying in traffic accidents each year, according to the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety.
Georgia has “primary” seat belt enforcement, which means that officers may stop drivers for seatbelt violations without any underlying violation. Understanding Georgia’s seat belt laws may help drivers avoid traffic penalties and may also save lives.
Seat belt rules for adults
Georgia law requires all adults 18 years of age or older to wear seatbelts while they are in the front seat of a passenger vehicle. A passenger vehicle is any vehicle designed to hold 10 or fewer people. Georgia lawmakers recently expanded the definition of “passenger vehicle” to include pick-up trucks, as well. Limited exceptions to the seat belt rules exist for delivery or emergency vehicles, and for adults who are physically or medically unable to wear a seat belt.
Seat belt rules for children
Children who are at least 6 years old but younger than 18 years old must wear a seatbelt in a passenger vehicle at all times, regardless of whether they are sitting in the front seats or rear seats. Georgia law requires that any child who is younger than six years old must be properly restrained in an appropriate child safety seat.
Drivers who violate Georgia’s seat belt rules – or transport passengers who violate these rules – may face tickets, fines and/or points against their driver licenses. More importantly, drivers who violate Georgia’s seat belt laws unnecessarily put their lives at risk.