Montana Department of Transportation

Malcolm “Mack” Long, Director

COVID-19

View the Governor’s Coronavirus Task Force site for more information.

Traffic Safety Programs

Occupant Protection

Montana's seat belt usage has grown steadily over the past few years. Restraint use on most of Montana's reservations, however, is still very low. Usage in pickup trucks is lower than other passenger vehicles and the usage rate among occupants from age 15 to 25 is lower than any other age group.

Our goals are to:

Reduce Unrestrained Fatalities

  • To decrease unrestrained passenger vehicle occupant fatalities in all seating positions by 2.8%, from the 2014-2018 five year rolling average of 95 to 92.2 by December 31, 2025.

Increase Seat Belt Use

  • To maintain statewide observed seat belt use of front seat outboard occupants at 88.9% through December 31, 2025.

For more information about this program contact:

, 406-444-0809


The Programs

Drive Safely

There were 212 fatalities in 2020. There have been 31 fatalities on Montana highways in 2021 compared to 14 fatalities for this same time in 2020.

Enforcement

Secondary vs. Primary Enforcement

Montana has secondary law enforcement for safety belt use, meaning that there must be another reason for stopping a vehicle other than noncompliance with safety belt laws before a violation can be charged.

Although Montana ranks relatively high for overall seat belt usage among states with secondary law enforcement, (79 percent in 2013 for all roads), National Highway Traffic Safety Administration research shows that most states with a primary enforcement law have higher compliance rates.

The Law

Presentations