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Seat Belts

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation seat belt laws and enhanced enforcement increase seat belt use, thereby reducing crash-related injuries. Seat belt use reduces serious crash-related injuries and deaths by about half, and seat belt laws and enforcement strategies have been proven to increase seat belt use.   

Illinois Seat Belt Law

The use of lap and shoulder belts has been proven to lower the risk of fatal injury to motor vehicle occupants and nearly all states have enacted some form of seat belt law although the strength of the law varies.

Illinois law requires all drivers and passengers (front and back seat) age 8 and older to wear safety belts even if the vehicle is equipped with air bags. Passengers under age 8 must be secured in an appropriate child restraint system as covered by the Child Passenger Protection Act.

If a passenger has a disability or medical condition that makes him/her unable to secure his/her own safety belt, the driver is responsible for securing and adjusting the safety belt for that passenger.

Click It or Ticket

Every year, Illinois participates in Click It or Ticket enforcement and media campaigns during the Memorial Day travel period to reinforce seatbelt safety awareness statewide. An intense paid media campaign is conducted concurrently with high-visibility enforcement to elevate the importance of the benefits of safety belt use, including issuance of citations for safety belt violations.

Saved by the Belt

Illinois Department of Transportation created the Saved by the Belt award to increase public awareness of the benefits or use of seat belts. The Saved by the Belt award reinforces the importance of buckling up and seeks to identify individuals whose lives are saved, or injuries significantly reduced because they were properly wearing a seat belt.

Who can submit nominations:

  • Law enforcement officers
  • Emergency medical providers
  • Other agencies involved in traffic crash reporting

Nominee criteria:

  • Nominee must have used proper combination of safety devices available (i.e., lap and shoulder belt)
  • Nominee involved in an Illinois crash, but need not be an Illinois resident
  • Nominee must not have been under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Crash must be considered a “serious” crash (more than a fender bender)
  • Nominee must not have been at cited for a willful or intentional violation of the law or found to be responsible for the crash
  • Crash must be verifiable through state/local records

***Eligibility will be determined after a complete review of the nomination and supporting documents.

Submit a Nomination

Saved by the Belt nomination form (Complete the form and submit via email)

Note: If using a different web browser (Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla FireFoxJ, right-click the form link and select "Save link as ... " to download a working copy. PDF
forms are currently not compatible with mobile or Apple (iOSJ devices.