Primary Law on Table

By  | 

It's already against the law to not wear your seat belt in Mississippi, but it's only what's called a secondary violation, meaning you can't be cited for it unless you've already been pulled over for something else.

Some lawmakers want to change that, hoping it will increase the state's usage.

A primary seat belt law has passed through a House committee in Jackson. If it passes, you could then be pulled over and fined if you're not wearing your seat belt.

Law enforcement officials say you're much more likely to survive or escape serious injury in an accident if you are wearing a seat belt.

"I think it's a good idea because it's going to encourage a lot of people that currently won't wear a seat belt, because they know if they have no other violation, they're not going to be cited for it," said Lt. Frankie Springer of the Lauderdale County Sheriff's Department. "So it'll encourage them to buckle up."

Mississippi is one of the few states without a primary seat belt law. It has the lowest seat belt compliance in the nation.

Seat Belt Usage:

Mississippi - 63.2%
Alabama - 80.0%
Arkansas - 64.2%
Louisiana - 75.0%