Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed a bill introduced by Assemblyman Fred Thiele Jr. (I-Sag Harbor) to require the use of seat belts in emergency vehicles operated by volunteer fire companies or ambulance services.The new law reverses a prior exemption on the use of seat belts, Mr. Thiele said. He introduced the legislation because research has shown that the largest cause of death for volunteer firefighters and EMS responders have been in vehicle accidents while riding to or from incident scenes, he said.
“The largest contributor to those deaths is failure to wear a seat belt,” Mr. Thiele said.
The new law is consistent with current training and operational procedures, the legislator said. He noted that his bill was supported by the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York.