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Safety belt use in Wisconsin has gone up and is mostly used by women.Safety belt use in Wisconsin has gone up, and more particularly in 2009 and 2010. The latest Wisconsin Department of Transportation annual survey shows that seat belt use has gone up from 60 percent in December 2002 to close to 80 percent in July 2010. The survey records only seat belt use by front seat occupants.

Laws

Wisconsin enacted a mandatory safety belt law with secondary enforcement in December 1987, a mandatory child safety seat law in May 1992, and a primary safety belt enforcement law in July 2009. The latest law is probably the reason why seat belt use jumped from 74 percent in December 2009 to 79.2 percent in July 2010. The 2005 Act 106 also made the use of booster seats mandatory in Wisconsin for children aged 4 to 7 years.

Age

Belt use is highest among children up to 4 years of age. This includes the use of child safety seats. However, a 2002 large-scale, nationwide study completed by the National Safe Kids Campaign showed that approximately 73 percent of child safety seats were used improperly, thereby increasing the risks of injury in case of a crash.

Seat belt use is lowest in the 16 to 25 age group. Even though the group represents only 15.5 percent of licensed drivers, it accounted for 26.4 percent of drivers involved in crashes in 2009.

Gender

In Wisconsin, women are more reasonable. We all knew that, but the difference is very consistent over the years. On average, since 1998, seat belt use by women has always been higher among women, with the gap women and men hovering between 13 and 10 percent.

Type of vehicle

80.3 percent of van occupants are likely to wear a seat belt, compared with 78.1 percent for SUVs and 76 percent for passenger cars. Occupants of pickup trucks are different: only 64.3 percent of them buckle up.

Hupy & Abraham, S.C. has offices in Milwaukee, Madison, and Appleton in Wisconsin, in Gurnee and Bloomington in Illinois, and Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, and Quad Cities in Iowa. If you or someone you love has been hurt in a car, truck or motorcycle accident, contact Hupy & Abraham today at 800-800-5676 (toll-free) or 414-223-4800 (local) for a free evaluation of your case, or send us an e-mail with your questions.

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