Report shines light on national seatbelt use

Wednesday, November 28, 2012 3:15:07 PM

Next time you're driving a corporate car rental for business travel, you'll want to take a cue from 86 percent of Americans. A recent report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration hinted at a record number of Americans buckling up in 2012, Fox News reported. Though the year hasn't ended yet, preliminary data suggested that 86 percent of Americans wore their seatbelts regularly this year, up 2 percent from 2011.

According to the report, the largest increase in seatbelt use occurred in southern states, where usage rates rose from 80 percent to 85 percent. Drivers in western states showed the greatest levels of caution, with 94 percent of drivers reporting that they wore seatbelts regularly. In the northeast, just 80 percent of drivers wore seatbelts.

When you're driving through various states for business travel, keep in mind that some states consider not wearing a seatbelt to be a ticketable offense. In these 32 states (plus Washington, D.C.), 90 percent of drivers reported wearing seatbelts. In the 17 states that don't allow police officers to pull drivers over on the basis of seatbelt use, just 78 percent of drivers buckled up.

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