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TRAFFIC SAFETY


Safety Belts and Child Safety Seats

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. When riding in a truck with only a front seat equipped with safety belts, a child under age 8 must be secured in an appropriate child restraint system.

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.

It is the responsibility of the driver to ensure that ALL passengers obey the safety belt law and the Child Passenger Protection Act. Anyone found guilty of disobeying this law is subject to a fine and court costs.

For more information, please see the Illinois Rules of the Road, Chapter 4.

Child Passenger Protection Act

The Child Passenger Protection Act requires that all children under age 8 be properly secured in an appropriate child safety restraint system. This includes the use of booster seats, which must only be used with a lap/shoulder safety belt. If the back seat of the vehicle is not equipped with lap/shoulder type safety belts, a child weighing more than 40 pounds may be transported in the back seat without a booster seat, secured with a lap belt only.

For more information, please visit the Child Passenger Safety Requirements page.

Usage Rates

Illinois' first safety belt survey was conducted in April 1985, prior to the safety belt law becoming effective on July 1, 1985.

  • 1985 — 15.9%
  • 1986 — 36.2%
  • 1987 — 37.3%
  • 1988 — 39.5%
  • 1989 — 40%
  • 1990 — 47.1%
  • 1991 — 50.4%
  • 1992 — 64%
  • 1993 — 67%
  • 1994 — 68.3%
  • 1995 — 68.7%
  • 1996 — 64%
  • 1997 — 64.2%
  • 1998 — 64.5%
  • 1999 — 65.9%
  • 2000 — 70.2%
  • 2001 — 71.4%
  • 2002 — 73.8%
  • 2003 — 76.2%
  • 2004 — 83.0%
  • 2005 — 86
  • 2006 — 88%
  • 2007 — 90.1%
  • 2008 — 90.5%
  • 2009 — 91.7%
  • 2010 — 92.6%
  • 2011 — 92.9%

Statistics *

Illinois Data — 2011

National Data — 2011


* Sources — National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Office of the Secretary of State