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Effectiveness: 3 Star Cost: Varies
Use: Unknown
Time: Varies

In 2020 there were 4,764 work-related fatalities in the United States. Transportation-related incidents were the most frequently reported event and accounted for 37.3% of these work-related fatalities (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021). In 2018, over 1,800 people were killed in on-the-job related motor vehicle crashes and an additional 379,000 were injured (Network of Employers for Traffic Safety [NETS], 2021). Employer impacts aren’t limited to on-the-job incidents. Crash related injuries and fatalities occurring off-hours can affect employers through insurance costs and lost productivity. In 2018, the total cost of motor vehicle crashes to employers was $72.2 billion (NETS, 2021). In 2018 unrestrained employees and their dependents cost employers approximately $7.4 billion (employees on the job: $1.7 billion; off-work employees and dependents $5.7 billion) (NETS, 2021).

Boal et al. (2016) used data from the 2013 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) to investigate seat belt use by occupational group. They found that self-reported seat belt behavior was significantly associated with occupation. They found the highest prevalence of inconsistent seat belt use among the following occupational groups: construction and extraction; farming, fishing, and forestry; and installation, maintenance, and repair. A study of oil and gas worker fatalities from 2003 to 2009 found that 28% of work-related fatalities involved motor vehicle crashes. Among those fatalities, 38% were unrestrained (Retzer, 2013).

In their survey of commercial vehicle drivers in Hawaii, Kim and Yamashita (2007) found that while 67% of respondents indicated that they always wear a seat belt, they believed that only 31% of other commercial vehicle drivers always wore a seat belt. When asked why commercial vehicle drivers (as a whole) don’t wear seat belts, common responses were inconvenience/frequent stops (29%), not safety conscious (23%), and discomfort (12%).


No summary of current programs exists.


Several workplace seat belt programs were conducted in the 1980s and 1990s. These programs were conducted at hospitals (Nimmer & Geller, 1988; Simons-Morton et al., 1987), universities (Geller et al., 1989; Rudd & Geller, 1985; Geller at al., 1982; Nelson & Bruess, 1986), and other businesses (Cope et al., 1986; Merrill & Sleet, 1984). Programs included varied components such as education, messaging, and incentives. While these early employer-based seat belt programs were largely effective at increasing seat belt use, the program variety and lack of evaluation of some programs makes it is difficult to identify which specific components were most beneficial (Race, 1990). Common elements of effective workplace seat belt use programs involved management’s commitment to their employees' safety (including formal policies that require use of a seat belt when in a company-owned vehicle or driving/traveling in a motor vehicle while on the job), education and safety training workshops, and incentives for wearing a seat belt as well as costs for non-compliance (e.g., dismissal after three warnings; Orme et al., 1982; Race, 1990).

A comprehensive review of 48 workplace seat belt interventions from 1980-1997 found that these programs were successful at increasing seat belt use in the target populations (Segui-Gomez, 2000). It is important to note that these programs were conducted in the 1980s and 1990s when seat belt use rates were significantly lower. With current higher use rates, similar programs today may generate less pronounced but still impactful gains in use as we move toward 100% use.

NETS, in partnership with NHTSA, developed material for a 4-week workplace campaign to improve seat belt use (2 Seconds 2 Click). The program includes information and education on the benefits of wearing a seat belt and the costs of not buckling up, weekly activities to keep employees engaged throughout the campaign, as well as material to evaluate the impact on seat belt use. Program material and the implementation plan are available. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration also provides a manual with tools to increase seat belt use for employers.


Program costs will vary depending on program components.

Time to Implement:

The time needed for implementation will depend on program goals and population. It is important to allow enough time for planning, implementation, and evaluation.