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Idaho’s Safety Restraint Issue – 2013

An unrestrained passenger motor vehicle occupant is killed every 3.8 days.

The cost of crashes involving unrestrained occupants was $773 million in 2013.

(Idaho Traffic Crashes 2013)


Idaho’s observed safety restraint use rate increased slightly from 79.0% in 2012 to 81.6% in 2013.  While the observed seat belt use rate was 82%, only 33% of the motor vehicle occupants killed in crashes were wearing seat belts.  If everyone had been wearing seat belts, 49 of the 97 unbelted motor vehicle occupants may have been saved. (Idaho Traffic Crashes 2013)


Lives Lost & People Injured
  • Safety restraints, when used, are the most effective safety feature ever introduced for vehicles, cutting in half the likelihood for fatal and serious injuries resulting from traffic crashes.  (Traffic Safety Facts 2012, NHTSA).   By this estimate there were 52 lives saved in 2013 by seat belt usage and an additional 49 lives could have been save if everyone had buckled up.
  • In 2013, 97 Idahoans killed in car crashes were not wearing their safety restraints.  In addition, 274 unbelted Idahoans were critically injured in traffic crashes.  (Idaho Traffic Crashes 2013)
  • In 2013, 75% of occupants killed in DUI crashes were not buckled up and 78% of those killed in speed-related crashes were not buckled up. 
  • In 2013, 61 people were killed in single-vehicle rollover crashes, only 10 or 16% were wearing seat belts or in a child safety seat. 
  • Seat belts are estimated to be even more effective in preventing fatalities in rollover crashes.  Seat belt use reduces fatalities by 74% in rollover crashes involving passenger cars and by 80% in rollover crashes involving light trucks. (This effectiveness info from Fatality Reduction by Safety Belts for Front Seat Occupants of Cars and Light Trucks, NHTSA, DOT HS 809 199) 
  • In 2013, the 18% of Idahoans that did not buckle up accounted for 62% of the passenger vehicle occupants killed in traffic crashes. 
  • When used properly, NHTSA estimates that seat belts (lap/shoulder belts) reduce the risk of fatal injury to front seat passenger car occupants by 45 percent and the risk of moderate-to-severe injury by 50 percent.  Seat belts are even more effective for light truck occupants, reducing the fatality risk by 60 percent and the moderate-to-serious injury risk by 65 percent. (Traffic Safety Facts 2012, NHTSA) 
  • Rear seat car occupants, seat belts reduce the risk of fatal injury by 44 percent.  For rear seat passenger van and sport utility vehicle occupants, seat belts reduce the risk of fatal injury by 73 percent. (DOT HS 808 945, NHTSA Technical Report, 1999)


Who Are the Unbelted Killed

Idaho Unrestrained Passenger Vehicle Occupant Fatality Profile: 2011-2013

  • Teen – Of the 57 teen passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes, 60% (34) were unrestrained.
  • Males – Males are less likely than women to buckle up.  In Idaho, men comprised 62% of all the passenger vehicle occupants killed.  Of the 262 male passenger vehicle occupants killed from 2011-2013, 65% (169) were unrestrained, while 50% (81)of the 161 female passenger vehicle occupants killed from 2011-2013 were unrestrained.
  • Rural Roads – Crashes occurring on rural roads accounted for 84% of the passenger vehicle occupants killed.  Of the 357 passenger vehicle occupants killed on rural roads over the last 3 years, 61% (218) were unrestrained.
  • There were 423 passenger vehicle occupants killed in traffic crashes in the last 3 years (from 2011 to 2013).  Of the 423 killed, 250 (59%) were unrestrained.


Page Last Modified: 5/21/2014 1:57:31 PM

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