Governor signs legislation to expand seat belt law

The bill expands Kentucky’s seat belt law to include vehicles designed to carry 15 or fewer passengers.

ELIZABETHTOWN, Ky. (May 30, 2012) — Gov. Steve Beshear, joined by state officials and highway safety advocates, today signed a bill that will expand Kentucky’s seat belt law to include vehicles designed to carry 15 or fewer passengers. State law previously required seat belt use in vehicles designed to carry 10 or fewer passengers.

“I’m pleased that we are closing a loophole in the previous law that neglected to protect drivers and passengers in 15-passenger vans,” Beshear said. “In my administration, safety is, and will continue to be, a top priority.”

Sen. Ernie Harris of Crestwood and Sen. Julie Denton of Louisville filed Senate Bill 89 in response to a 15-passenger van crash in 2010 on I-65 near Munfordville that killed 11 people, most of whom were not wearing seat belts.

“With the accident two years ago, it became evident that Kentucky’s seatbelt laws did not adequately protect some travelling on our roadways,” Harris said. “It is my hope that with this new law, this horrible tragedy will never be repeated.”

Beshear was joined by Harris, Sen. Dennis Parrett of Elizabethtown and Kentuckians for Better Transportation Director Stan Lampe for the signing held at the KSP Police Post in Elizabethtown.