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Ticket For Improper Use Of A Safety Belt

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Did you know that you can get a ticket for the improper use of a safety belt? In other words, if you are one of those people who tucks the shoulder strap of the safety belt, under your arm, you can get an enforceable ticket.MCL 257.710e, section (3) requires that each driver and front seat passenger of a motor vehicle operated on a street or highway in this state shall wear a properly adjusted and fastened safety belt, except that a child less than 4 years of age shall be protected as required in section 710d. If there are more passengers than safety belts available for use, and all safety belts in the motor vehicle are being utilized in compliance with this section, the driver of the motor vehicle is in compliance with this section.

Furthermore, section (4) requires that each driver of a motor vehicle transporting a child 4 years of age or more but less than 16 years of age in a motor vehicle shall secure the child in a properly adjusted and fastened safety belt. If the motor vehicle is transporting more children than there are safety belts available for use, all safety belts available in the motor vehicle are being utilized in compliance with this section, and the driver and all front seat passengers comply with subsection (3), then the driver of a motor vehicle transporting a child 4 years of age or more but less than 16 years of age for which there is not an available safety belt is in compliance with this subsection, if that child is seated in other than the front seat of the motor vehicle. However, if that motor vehicle is a pickup truck without an extended cab or jump seats, and all safety belts in the front seat are being used, the driver may transport such a child in the front seat without a safety belt.

Pertinent is the “properly adjusted” language and under section (7) of the same law, failure to wear a “properly adjusted” safety belt is a civil infraction. So, if you are driving down the street with your safety belt on, but under your arm instead of over your shoulder, you are not off the police radar. Also, if you are stopped by an officer who inquires whether you were wearing your safety belt and you think you can get away with answering that you had it on but he just could not see it because it was under your arm, then you are going to lose the plea. Your best bet will be to be very respectful when begging for mercy because you can’t afford to have your insurance go up. (Yes, even if the ticket is a 0 point ticket, it may take you out of your preferred status with your insurance carrier thereby causing your insurance to increase.)

Discussion:

  1. If there are more people in the car than the number of seat belts and all the seat belts are being occupied, what would the charge fall under for not having someone seat belted?

  2. According to this law, if there are more passengers than safety belts available for use, and all safety belts in the motor vehicle are being utilized in compliance with the law, then the law is not violated and there would be no ticket.

    Thank you for your comment.

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