Seatbelt Rules in Singapore
This is the main reason why it is mandatory in Singapore for the driver as well as all passengers to wear seatbelts. Child restraints are required for children below the age of eight. Booster seats are compulsory for larger children in order to help them safely wear an adult seatbelt.
Passengers who are not belted up will be fined S$120.
If the driver is not wearing a seatbelt, then he or she will be fined S$120 and awarded 3 demerit points. The same penalty also applies in case the driver fails to ensure that all passengers are strapped in.
Which cars are required to comply with Singapore’s seatbelt rules?
- All vehicles registered in Singapore on or after January 1, 1973 must observe front seatbelt rules
- It is compulsory for all vehicles registered in Singapore on or after January 1, 1993 to observe rear seatbelt rules
- Vehicles that have been registered before January 1, 1993 and which have rear seatbelts must comply with seatbelt rules as well
Do remember that it is illegal to remove factory-fitted rear seatbelts. Also, damaged seatbelts have to be repaired as soon as possible.
What about foreign registered cars?
Singapore’s seatbelt laws apply only to vehicles registered in Singapore. Drivers of foreign registered cars equipped with seatbelts are advised to wear them for their own safety.
What if there are more passengers than available seatbelts?
According to the seatbelt rule, all available seatbelts have to be used up. The decision regarding who should be belted up is yours.
While you may opt to carry more passengers than the number of available seatbelts, do remember that you are taking a risk by overloading your vehicle.
Are pregnant women required to wear seatbelts?
Pregnant women are not exempt from Singaporean seatbelt rules. It is potentially safer for a pregnant woman to wear a seatbelt as it better protects the fetus in case of an accident.
Women in advanced stages of pregnancy are advised to tuck the lap belt just below their stomach region for more comfort and safety.
Can I apply for an exemption if I am pregnant or have a medical condition that does not allow me to wear a seatbelt?
Yes. You will need a letter from your family doctor, which has to be submitted to the Traffic Police or to the Ministry of Health for approval.
Top Questions on Seatbelt Safety
Won’t I run the risk of being trapped in a burning or submerged car if I wear a seatbelt?
Statistics have shown that less than one percent of injury-inducing collisions involve submersion or fire. In fact, wearing a seatbelt even in these situations can actually save your life!
If you are involved in a collision without your seatbelt, you could be rendered unconscious or stunned by striking some part of the car’s interior. This can waste precious seconds and greatly lower your chances of escaping from a car that is burning or submerged.
Wearing your seatbelt makes you more likely to be unhurt, alert and able to escape faster.
What about child restraints in situations where I need to get my child out quickly?
Most child restraints have ‘quick-release’ buckles that can be quickly unfastened by an adult.
Why would I need a seatbelt in the rear seat?
Research has shown that wearing a seatbelt even when sitting in the rear can save lives. Rear seat passengers who do not belt up are very likely to be flung forward in a collision. The force at which they are hurled forward can injure front seat passengers very seriously.
The same research determined that about 79% of front seat deaths could have been prevented if those sitting in the rear seats had worn their seatbelts.
The Information section of the Singapore Police Force website contains useful information on the laws and issues related to seatbelts.
References : Seat Belt Rules. Singapore Police Force Website