Drivers urged to stay seatbelt safe

COVID-19 has brought a number of changes into our daily lives including a major increase in the number of home delivery services.

While this means better social distancing and convenience for Canberrans ordering food and goods, head of the ACT Policing COVID-19 Taskforce, Detective Superintendent Hall O’Meagher reminded delivery drivers they were not exempt from the ACT’s road rules.

“We’ve seen a greater number of delivery vans out and about throughout the pandemic and unfortunately many of these drivers are failing to follow simple seatbelt laws,” Detective Superintendent O’Meagher said.

“Some delivery drivers are either not wearing their seatbelt at all, or are sitting on top of the seatbelt and pulling the sash component over their heads to avoid the seatbelt alarm.

“Wearing a seatbelt in this manner could be disastrous in the case of even low level collisions with the lower part of the body moving unrestrained and the upper part held largely by the neck. 

“The reality is it saves very little time compared to wearing the belt correctly, and actually increases the likelihood of injury in a crash.

“I appreciate delivery drivers face time pressures and the inconvenience of regularly jumping in and out of their vehicle however there is simply no excuse for breaking the law and putting yourself at risk.”

Delivery drivers are only permitted to travel without a seatbelt if they are moving at 25km/h or less.

The penalty for driving without a correctly fastened seatbelt is $502 and three demerit points.

ACT Policing conducted 1004 COVID-19 quarantine checks in the past week, bringing the total number to more than 18,250 during Canberra’s COVID-19 response.

For the most recent information on the ACT’s COVID-19 restrictions, visit the COVID-19 website changes to restrictions page.

For general enquiries – including to make reports of non-compliance, contact the COVID-19 Helpline on 6207 7244 (8am-8pm, 7 days a week) or online available here. For police assistance call 131 444 and only contact Triple Zero (000) for emergencies.

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