Seat belt law getting attention after rash of...

Posted at 11:00 PM, Dec 30, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-31 00:00:02-05

A leading advocate in Omaha is urging Nebraska lawmakers to take action when it comes to buckling up.

Former state senator Patrick Venditte wants to make it mandatory for Nebraskans to wear a seat belt. Under current Nebraska laws, you can only get a ticket for not wearing your seatbelt if you are pulled over for something else like speeding. 

"So many of our young people and the people that I've had in drivers ed most recently since retiring from Westside still haven't gotten the message," said Venditte.

According to the Nebraska Department of Roads, nearly 80-percent of people killed in car crashes were not wearing a seat belt.

Drivers like Dan Lipiri wear his seatbelt, which potentially saved his life years ago, "As a younger teen I got into a car accident and I could have been launched pretty good if I didn't wear my seat belt."

Omaha resident Camilia Pecho worked at a hospital before and said she saw first hand what not wearing a seatbelt can do, "I saw some pretty bad cases of people not wearing their seatbelt getting hit at 45 miles per hour."

But not everybody is going full speed on this proposal.

"I don't think it should go as far as making it a law, personally I think it's annoying that the car beeper is annoying enough," said Nathan Aargus.

But for Venditte, that beeping noice is to remind you, wearing a seatbelt can save your life.

"I think what's happened in the last 48 hours with 3 young people being killed and I think everyone in that car was ejected, and a former student of mine this summer same way, I don't know what happened he was one of the best drivers I've had, great student in class," said Venditte.

The beginning of the legislative session starts next Wednesday January 6th.