BOSTON (CBS) – Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration announced new road safety legislation on Monday. Included is the possibility for communities to install red light cameras and a proposal that would allow police to stop drivers for not wearing their seat belt.
Baker said allowing law enforcement to make seat belt violations a primary reason for a traffic stop would put Massachusetts in line with 34 other states that already have the law on the book.READ MORE: Brookline To Lift Outdoor Mask Mandate On May 21
“Seat belt use is a proven lifesaver. Massachusetts lags the nation in this most simple action. We need to be better in primary enforcement as an effective tool in that effort,” said acting transportation secretary Jamey Tesler.
Jeff Larson of the Highway Safety Bureau said the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that seatbelts saved 60 lives in Massachusetts in 2018.
“Tragically over half of the people who are killed on our roads in Massachusetts are unbelted, and these are entirely preventable tragedies,” Larson said.READ MORE: Truck Drivers For Shaw's Supermarkets Return To Work
If passed, the bill would allow cities and towns to place red light cameras at intersections. Cameras would only collect photographs when a violation occurs, and the picture would be of the car’s license plates.
The proposal also include a provision called Haley’s Law, named after Haley Cremer, who was killed in 2014 on Father’s Day while she was standing on the side of the road. The driver who hit and killed her had just recently had his license suspended.
Haley’s Law would increase penalties for drivers who cause personal injury while driving with a suspended license.MORE NEWS: NH Family Thankful For Amazon Driver's Act Of Kindness Caught On Doorbell Camera
Also included in the bill is a law that would require a driver to maintain a 3-foot “safe passing distance” and travel at a reasonable speed when passing a bicyclist or pedestrian.