NHTSA proposes safety belt requirement for new motorcoaches

A notice of proposed rulemaking (.pdf file) from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration would require lap-shoulder safety belts for each seat in new motorcoaches -- including passenger and driver seats, Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood announced Aug. 16. The goal is to prevent driver and passenger ejections during a collision.

An average of 19 motorcoach occupants are killed each year. Lap-shoulder belts on motorcoaches are expected to reduce the risk for passengers being killed in a rollover crash by 77 percent, NHTSA research shows.

Comments on the NPRM must be received by Oct. 18. The proposed rule would take effect three years after the final rule is issued.

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