Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to subnav
Searching 2023-2024 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

The Vermont Statutes Online have been updated to include the actions of the 2023 session of the General Assembly.

NOTE: The Vermont Statutes Online is an unofficial copy of the Vermont Statutes Annotated that is provided as a convenience.

Title 23 : Motor Vehicles

Chapter 013 : Operation of Vehicles

Subchapter 014 : Equipment

(Cite as: 23 V.S.A. § 1259)
  • § 1259. Safety belts; persons 18 years of age or older

    (a) The operator of a motor vehicle shall be guilty of a violation of this section if any person 18 years of age or older is occupying a seating position that has been manufactured with a federally approved safety belt system and is not restrained by the safety belt system while the motor vehicle is in motion on a public highway.

    (b) A person is required to be restrained in a safety belt system unless:

    (1) the person is a rural mail carrier of the U.S. Postal Service operating a motor vehicle in the performance of employment;

    (2) the person is a driver or passenger frequently stopping and leaving the motor vehicle or delivering property from the motor vehicle, if the speed of the motor vehicle between stops does not exceed 15 miles per hour;

    (3) the person is the operator of any farm tractor;

    (4) the person is a member of the emergency personnel of an emergency motor vehicle and finds it necessary to be unrestrained in order to perform his or her duties;

    (5) the motor vehicle the person is occupying is a bus or taxi;

    (6) the person is required to be restrained under section 1258 of this title; or

    (7) the person has been ordered by an enforcement officer, a firefighter, or an authorized civil authority to evacuate persons from a stricken area.

    (c) Noncompliance with the provisions of this section shall not be admissible as evidence in any civil proceeding.

    (d) Failure to wear a safety belt in violation of this section shall not constitute negligence or contributory negligence in any civil proceeding or criminal action, nor be entered as evidence to bar prosecution of a criminal offense.

    (e) This section may be enforced only if a law enforcement officer has detained the operator of a motor vehicle for another suspected traffic violation. An operator shall not be subject to the penalty established in this section unless the operator is required to pay a penalty for the primary violation.

    (f) The penalty for violation of this section shall be as follows:

    (1) $25.00 for a first violation;

    (2) $50.00 for a second violation; and

    (3) $100.00 for third and subsequent violations. (Added 1993, No. 18, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1994; amended 2001, No. 139 (Adj. Sess.), § 8; 2003, No. 28, § 2, eff. Jan. 1, 2004; 2005, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.), § 62; 2009, No. 150 (Adj. Sess.), § 7, eff. June 1, 2010; 2015, No. 47, § 42; 2021, No. 20, § 243; 2021, No. 105 (Adj. Sess.), § 419, eff. July 1, 2022.)