Check what you know

Did you know?

Best practice tips

Did you know?

  • Seat belts are simple to put on and save lives.
  • The fixed penalty for not wearing a seatbelt is £100 per person. If the case goes to court a fine of up to £500 can be imposed.
  • The use of a seat belt by drivers and vehicle occupants is compulsory in the UK.
  • People not wearing a seat belt are 30 times more likely to be ejected from a vehicle during a collision.
If the vehicle has seat belts fitted, legally they must be worn.

Male drivers aged 17 to 59 are most likely not to wear a seat belt.

Common reasons why people do not wear a seat belt include: habit or forgetting, not believing they provide a safety benefit, discomfort, peer pressure, thrill seeking and perceived lack of enforcement.

Most collisions involving non-belted occupants occur between 00:01 and 07:59.

28% of drivers and passengers in fatal collisions were not wearing seat belts.

Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK where you can be issued with points as well as a fine for failing to wear a seat belt.

Best practice tips

Always wear a seat belt, even on short journeys.

Make sure there are enough three-point seat belts for everyone travelling in the vehicle, especially when using hired vehicles.

Before setting off, make it a habit to check that everyone in the vehicle is belted up, both in front and rear seats.

Before setting off, make it a habit to check everyone has their head rest properly adjusted. They can protect someone’s neck from whiplash. If unchecked this can lead to severe injuries, paralysation, or death.

People that do not need to wear a seat belt:

    • A driver who is reversing, or supervising a learner driver who is reversing.
    • In a vehicle being used for police, fire, and rescue services.
    • A passenger in a trade vehicle investigating a fault.
    • Driving a goods vehicle on deliveries that is travelling no more than 50 metres between stops.
    • A licensed taxi driver who is ‘plying for hire’ or carrying passengers.

Visit for exemptions to wearing seat belts

Should a doctor say a seat belt does not need to be worn for a medical reason, they will issue a ‘Certificate of Exemption from Compulsory Seat Belt Wearing’. This must be kept in the vehicle and shown to the Police if stopped.

This information sheet is free for employers to download and distribute to their drivers.
It may not be amended in any way | Copyright 2022 National Highways.