RCMP warns lack of seatbelt use causes deaths

Buckle up, drivers and passengers—the consequences of not wearing your seatbelt can be deadly

St. John’s, NL (July 26, 2018) – Today, the RCMP in Newfoundland & Labrador issued a warning on the deadly consequences of not wearing seatbelts. In the last 5 years, of the fatal collisions that the RCMP has responded to, approximately one third of all of the people killed were not wearing seatbelts. Many of these collisions would not have been fatal had seatbelts been worn.

“It is sad and tragic knowing that so many of the deaths we see on our roads and highways may have been preventable,” said Sergeant Oliver Whiffen, Forensic Collision Reconstructionist with Traffic Services, RCMP NL. “Seat belt use is absolutely the best way to protect yourself in the event of a vehicle crash – if you are not belted in, your body might go through a windshield or slam against other passengers. It should be an automatic response for every driver and passenger in this province to buckle up when entering a vehicle. Unfortunately, this is not the reality and, as a result, people are dying in car crashes that they could possibly have survived.”

Seatbelt use is mandatory in Newfoundland and Labrador for all occupants of vehicles with seatbelts, including children, who need to be secured with appropriate restraint systems. The driver holds responsibility for ensuring all occupants of the vehicle who are under the age of 16 are secured.

“With summer upon us and increased traffic on the highways, residents and visitors are reminded to ensure they and their loved ones buckle up every single time, regardless of the destination distance,” said Sergeant Whiffen.

RCMP NL will be getting the message out about the importance of seatbelt use with a social media campaign #BuckleUpNL. Users of social media are asked to share posts, pictures or videos, with the hashtag #BuckleUpNL, showing their commitment to driving safely and to buckling up.


Through an agreement between Canada and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, RCMP NL provides provincial and Indigenous policing services, with 44 detachments and additional specialized units, covering a service area of 82 per cent of the province’s landmass and including over 260 towns, 3 First Nations Reserves, 190 unincorporated communities and many populated areas between towns and communities. In addition, the RCMP provides federal policing resources to address priorities including national security, organized crime and drug enforcement throughout the entire province.

Source: RCMP NL

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