A subcommittee in the Virginia House of Delegates has voted down a measure that would have made failing to buckle up a primary offense. That means that there likely will be no action on this proposal for this legislative session.
As we reported previously, not using your seat belt is considered a secondary offense under current Virginia law. You can only be cited if you are pulled over by the police for another infraction.
Currently, Virginia law states that “occupants of front seats who are 16 years or older are required to use safety lap belts and shoulder harnesses.” However, breaking that law is a secondary offense: Police may cite you for a seat-belt violation only if they see you committing another offense, such as speeding or running a red light.
The same subcommittee also defeated a bill that would make talking on a cell phone a primary offense if you are driving with a provisional license. However, the panel approved a proposal that would require anyone under age 18 to wear a seat belt in the back seat of a car. Currently, only those 16 or younger in the back seat must wear seat belts.