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State Safety Office

State Safety Office / Programs / Occupant Protection & Child Passenger Safety

Occupant Protection & Child Passenger Safety


Occupant Protection/Child Passenger Safety

"Correctly using a child restraint for a young child or wearing a seat belt by older children and
adults is the single most effective way to save lives and reduce injuries in crashes. Research has
found that lap and shoulder combination seat belts, when used, reduce the risk of fatal injury to
front-seat passenger car occupants by 45% and the risk of moderate-to-critical injury by 50%
(NHTSA, 2001). For light-truck occupants, seat belts reduce the risk of fatal injury by 60% and
moderate-to-critical injury by 65% (NHTSA, 2009)."

Occupant Protection Program requires a combination of legislation and use requirements, enforcement, communication, education, and incentive strategies necessary to achieve significant, lasting increases in seat belt and child safety seat usage. Programs receiving grant funding in this priority area are focused on three major program related categories:

  1. Legislation, Regulation and Policy: Programs to enact and enforce occupant protection use laws, regulations, and policies to provide clear guidance to the public concerning motor vehicle occupant protection systems.
  2. Communication Program: Programs that enlist the support of a variety of media, including mass media, to improve public awareness and knowledge and to support enforcement efforts to about seat belts, air bags, and child safety seats.
  3. Occupant Protection for Children Program: Programs to aid in the compliance with and enforcement of protection laws that require the correct restraint of all children, in all seating positions and in every vehicle.

Current Seat Belt Use Rate: 88.8%

Occupant Protection Grants

Child Safety Grants



Our Partners


Programs should focus on seat belt use awareness, enforcement, special needs, teens, minority programs, and other education programs. This area also includes establishing or expanding child passenger safety inspection stations, child passenger safety awareness training, school bus safety, special needs training, and other child passenger safety programs. Items eligible for funding under this category may include: educational materials, survey materials, variable message boards, child safety seats, inspection station supplies, trailers for use as mobile inspection stations, and public awareness materials.

All program areas funded with grant funds are required to have an evaluation method that will allow assessment of the funded program's level of success in reducing fatalities and injuries.

Occupant Protection Incentive Grants (Section 405-B)

Purpose: To encourage States to adopt and implement effective occupant protection programs to reduce highway deaths and injuries resulting from unrestrained or improperly restrained vehicle occupants.

Use of Funds: To implement and enforce occupant protection programs

The following are what 405-B Occupant Protection Incentive Grants funding can reimburse:

  • High-visibility enforcement mobilizations including paid media

  • Training of occupant protection safety professionals, police officers, fire and emergency medical personnel, educators and parents about all aspects of the use of child restraints and occupant protection

  • Public education concerning proper use and installation of child restraints including related equipment and information systems

  • Community child passenger safety services, including programs about proper seating positions for children and how to reduce the improper use of child restraints

  • Purchase and distribution of child restraints to low-income families (maximum of 5 percent of funds apportioned in a fiscal year)

  • Establish and maintain occupant protection information systems, including the collection and administration of child passenger safety and occupant protection surveys

Child Safety and Child Booster Seat Incentive Grants (Section 2011)

The Section 2011 Child Safety and Child Booster Seat Incentive Grant grant program was authorized under SAFETEA-LU. It is administered by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) at the federal level and the  State Safety Office (SSO) at the state level.

This grant program encourages states to enact and enforce booster seat requirements.


The Florida Highway Patrol employs a Roll-Over Simulator to demonstrate the benefit of seat belt use.


click it or ticket campaign logoFlorida Law requires that all drivers and front seat passengers use seat belts when the vehicle is in motion. In addition, all persons under 18 years old are required to be restrained by a seat belt or child restraint device. FS 316.614

Short high-visibility enforcement campaigns are a proven high cost countermeasure.

The Florida Highway Patrol participates in the Click It or Ticket Campaigns.


Frequently Asked Questions FL Seat Belt Use Report 2014 Child Restraint Law 
Florida Highway Patrol  FL Seat Belt Use Report 2013  Child Safety Seat Brochure  En Espanol 
NHTSA Child Safety  Car Seat Ratings  Child Product Recalls 
Certified Child Seat Technicians  Car Seat Recalls  NHTSA Seat Belt Use in 2012 
SAFE KIDS  Florida Seat Belt Law   

For more information contact Ralph Salvas @ (850) 414-4048