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NH House passes mandatory seat belt bill

February 18, 2009
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CONCORD, N.H.—The New Hampshire House has voted in favor of a bill to make the Granite State the last U.S. jurisdiction to require all drivers and passengers to wear seat belts.

Under current law, only minors have to buckle up. The bill calls for a primary law, meaning police can pull over motorists solely for not wearing seat belts. Twenty-five states have primary laws, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

New Hampshire would receive $3.7 million in federal grants if it passes a primary law. The bill applies to all vehicles except large school buses, cars made before 1968 and vehicles making frequent stops for business purposes. Violators would face a $50 fine for the first offense and a $100 fine for each additional offense.

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