Seatbelt Usage in Arizona
Anyone riding in a vehicle in Arizona has had to follow seatbelt laws since 1991 when they were first enacted. Arizona is a secondary enforcement state, which means a law officer may only ticket a person for not wearing a seatbelt if they are stopped for another reason. The fine for a first offense is $10 and affects anyone eight years and older in front seats and those aged eight through 15 in all seats.
Children age four and younger must be in a child safety seat along with those up to age seven if they are shorter than 57 inches. The rate for those wearing seatbelts has climbed steadily in Arizona since 2007 when it was at 80.9 percent. In 2014, it was at 87.2 percent, up from 84.7 percent in 2013, which is an increase of 2.5 percent.
Arizona has a lower rate of seatbelt wear than the national average at 82 percent compared to 86 percent. This state is part of the West region, which has the highest rate of use at 95 percent, which is well above the rest of the country.
Nationwide, rates of seatbelt usage vary by location, the day of the week and other factors. For instance, more people in urban areas wear seatbelts than those in rural areas. Those driving in heavy traffic are more likely to buckle up than those in steady or light traffic. While both weekday and weekend drivers have a high rate of usage, it dips slightly during rush hours. More people who travel in cars, vans, and SUVs take the time to put on their seatbelts than those riding in pickup trucks.
Light fog will increase the use of seatbelts while light precipitation appears to lower the usage just slightly from clear weather.