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Virginia Seat Belt Laws for Every Drivers’ Protection

Before getting auto insurance quotes Virginia, there are so many things that you should know.  

You hop into your car, start the engine, and back out of the driveway – forgetting several things:

1. Virginia law requires the use of your seatbelt

2. Virginia law requirement— front seat passengers over the age of 18 use seatbelts,  and use is required of all persons under the age of 18 regardless of position in the car,

3. Children and infants must be in approved safety seats, and

4. Most importantly – most crashes happen within 25 miles of home.

Are there valid reasons for not wearing seatbelts?   No, but these are some of the ones which are routinely heard:

* The belt is not comfortable.   However if the shoulder harness is worn across the chest (not under the arm or behind the torso) it should be adjusted properly.

* My clothing gets wrinkled.   Well that is unfortunate but not a good reason to risk being ejected from the car during a crash.

* I have airbags.   But airbags are made to be used in tandem with seatbelts and have a different function.

* If there is a crash or the car goes into the water I will not be able to get out.   In less than one in two hundred major crashes does a vehicle go underwater.   If you cannot get out of the seatbelt, you probably will not be able to open your door either; however there are multipurpose tools available which will cut seatbelts and provide other emergency use.

* Pregnant driving.   The seatbelt should be worn across the hips, not over the abdomen.   There is no risk to the baby.

* I’m only going on a short trip or at a very slow speed.   As mentioned, most crashes occur near home and the speed is not relevant.   You may be going slowly but the other driver involved in a collision may not be at a safe speed and his impact velocity will overcome all of your pre-conceptions about driving slowly.

If your seatbelt is not functioning properly, go to your dealer.   Nationally all manufacturers are required to provide lifetime repair or replacement of seatbelts (but not necessarily the anchors and mounts).   Have it replaced when the belt is not functioning property – it will save you injuries if needed in an accident, and possible fines if you are cited for failure to use.

Failure to use seatbelts is another of those violations of the law which may impact on the insurance coverage you have available in the event of an accident.   Many policies exclude damages incurred while operating the vehicle in violation of law.   Seatbelts may seem like a small issue but, depending on the insurance company, use of the belt may make the difference between having that spinal injury treated to the full extent of the medical coverage, or just having emergency services covered.

Obtaining proper insurance is more than merely selecting Virginia state minimum coverage.    Use the checkbox at the top of the page and determine some comparative auto insurance quotes Virginia from companies who are licensed to provide insurance in Virginia.   Learning the rules about insurance, about seatbelt use and general driving issues can be life saving and prevent life-long economic loss.