Crackdown on seatbelt use

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TRAFFIC officers in the region have joined up to a Europe-wide safety campaign.

Members of policing crews from the Cleveland and Durham Specialist Operations Unit will take part in a crackdown on drivers and passengers who are not wearing their seatbelts from yesterday for a week. The initiative has been launched by the European Traffic Network Police, TISPOL.

Northumbria Police are also involved in the crackdown.

Acting Chief Inspector Mick Robson, from the Cleveland and Durham Specialist Operations Unit, said: “Anyone travelling in a vehicle who fails to wear a seatbelt is breaking the law, and in doing so, is putting themselves and other people in the vehicle at a hugely increased risk of serious injury or death.

“Children are our most precious cargo and we need to protect them in the right manner whenever they are travelling in a vehicle, no matter how short or familiar the journey might be.”

Failing to wear a seatbelt carries a penalty of £100, should motorists be given an on-the-spot fine. Prosecution can lead to a maximum fine of up to £500.

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Vera Baird added: “The time it takes to fasten your seatbelt is a small price to pay for ensuring your safety.”