The FMCSA announced today that passengers in commercial vehicles will be required to wear seat belts at all times on public roads while the truck is being operated in interstate commerce.
The new seatbelt rule will go into effect on August 8, 2016. The rule also places the responsibility for ensuring that passengers wear their seat belts on motor carriers and drivers.
The FMCSA hopes that the new seatbelt rule will improve truck passenger safety. In 2014, 37 truck passengers who were not wearing seat belts died in crashes — and about 1/3 of those passengers were ejected from the truck.
FMCSA rule makers also say that the ruling is designed to enhance safety for truck drivers: “This rule will increase the safety, not only of passengers, but also of CMV drivers whose control of the vehicle could otherwise be affected by unsecured passengers potentially thrown about the cab as a result of emergency steering or braking maneuvers.”
You can read the full text of the FMCSA’s ruling in the document below.