Cops nail 2000 for no seatbelts

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

Two-thousand Durban drivers in the KwaZulu-Natal province were arrested for not wearing their seatbelts in the city last month.

The shocking statistics were released by the Durban Metro Police yesterday.

Metro police spokesman, Senior Superintendent, Thozamile Tyala said the arrests were indications that most drivers were still not complying with the rules of the road.

He said not only drivers were arrested, but passengers as well were charged.

"We have arrested some parents who were travelling with infants and young children, but had not adhered to the rules as they were not fastened to their seatbelts.

"This is a concern to us as it shows that some people don't care about the lives of their young ones," said Tyala.

He said as the festive season draws closer, authorities would clamp down on all those drivers who are not obeying the rules, and would arrest them.

"We will make sure each and every driver obeys the rules or faces the music."

He said there had been devastating accidents in the province and attributed most of them to seatbelt violations.

"Lives can be saved by doing a simple thing - fastening a seatbelt - but people fail to do so.

"Durban metro police want to remind drivers that a seatbelt is the single most important occupant protection available, and that seatbelts are designed to work with modern airbag systems," he said.

A study by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration showed that the three-point safety belt, which includes a combination of lap belt and shoulder-to-hip belt, "protects the internal organs in a crash.

"It controls the forward motion of the body and the accompanying rotation of the pelvis, and also minimises head contact and excessive neck motion."

This system reduces the risk of fatality and serious injuries by 50percent when used by drivers and front-seat passengers.

It was therefore regarded as the first line of defence against injuries or death.