Mandatory Seat Belt Use by Police Officers

Adopted at the 118th Annual Conference 
Chicago, IL 
October 26, 2011

Mandatory Seat Belt Use by Police Officers
Submitted by the Executive Committee
ec.008.A11 

WHEREAS, the first responsibility of government, as well as government leaders, is to ensure the safety and well-being of its citizens and the lives of those of the officers who have dedicated their lives to protecting their communities; and 

WHEREAS, it is their responsibility continually evaluate and develop techniques that will protect officers and provide them with the equipment and training that will protect them when they are confronted by someone who will not hesitate to injure or use deadly physical force against them; and 

WHEREAS, in order to fulfill their duties and responsibilities of protecting their communities, law enforcement officers must first protect themselves; and 

WHEREAS, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF), 1,626 law enforcement officers in the United States were killed in the line of duty between 2000 and 2009; and 

WHEREAS, the NLEOMF indicates that the cause of 69 percent of law enforcement deaths between 2000 and 2009 (1,118) are from motor vehicle crashes and firearm related incidents; and, 

WHEREAS; the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has reported that fatal traffic incidents in 2010 were the leading cause of officer deaths for the 13th straight year; and, 

WHEREAS, in a recent report, NHTSA found that at least 42 percent of the officers killed in traffic crashes from 1980 - 2008 were not wearing seat belts; and, 

WHEREAS, the issue of seat belt usage represents a critical officer safety issue and imperative that police executives take all necessary steps to ensure the safety of their officers; now therefore be it 

RESOLVED, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) calls on all law enforcement executives to immediately develop and implement mandatory seat belt for their departments.