Seatbelt Safety

    by Pam Walker, Assistant Program Director

On Wednesday April 10th of this year, I had an opportunity to testify before the Massachusetts Public Safety Committee at our State House in Boston, in support of House Bill # 4241. What is House Bill #4241 you ask? This bill is asking the Massachusetts Legislature to mandate a law requiring the installment and use of 3 point seatbelts (shoulder/lap belts) on all of our school buses. I felt very privileged to be able to voice my support for school bus seatbelts and to be actually involved in making our State government work.

Some of the facts which caused me to want to support this Bill are as follows: Each year 1 out of every 10 school buses are involved in crashes, in the United States the leading cause of death in children ages 4-19 is the failure to buckle up, 63% of all children who die in crashes are unrestrained, and lastly, three-point seatbelts would cost $3500. per bus, that's a one time charge of $3.24 per passenger.

House bill #4241 is now in the process of working it's way through the Massachusetts legislature. This is a very lengthy and time consuming process It would be a great help in ensuring the passage of this bill, if everyone contacts their own local representative (it's easy – just call the State House in Boston at 617-722-2800 and ask for his/her office) and expresses your voice of support.

We all know the devastation and tragedy caused by suffering a traumatic brain injury. One of the simple answers to decreasing the numbers of these injuries is to put our kids in buses which offer the greatest protection possible. 3 point seatbelts will protect our children and save our tax dollars.

If you would like more information on 3 point seatbelts, there is a website that can help.
You can log on to for studies, statistics and the latest updates.

1.    National Safety Council
2.    National Transportation Safety Board
3.    Busbelts Development, LLC

Revised: February 23, 2002