2019 Maryland Code
Title 22 - Vehicle Laws -- Equipment of Vehicles
Subtitle 4 - Other Equipment
§ 22-412.4. Seat belts or restraining devices in emergency vehicles

    (a)    (1)    In this section the following words have the meanings indicated.

        (2)    “Seat belt” means a restraining device described under § 22–412 of this subtitle.

        (3)    “Vehicle” means an emergency vehicle purchased or leased by the State, a county, municipality, or volunteer fire department or rescue squad and operated by a:

            (i)    State, county, or municipal fire department;

            (ii)    Volunteer fire department; or

            (iii)    Rescue squad.

    (b)    A vehicle registered in the State and manufactured and assembled after January 1, 1990 shall be equipped with a seat belt or safety restraining device approved by the local authority having jurisdiction for each position on the vehicle that may be lawfully occupied by a passenger.

    (c)    (1)    The failure of a person to use a seat belt or restraining device required under this section may not:

            (i)    Be considered evidence of negligence;

            (ii)    Be considered evidence of contributory negligence;

            (iii)    Limit liability of a party or an insurer;

            (iv)    Diminish recovery for damages arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or operation of a motor vehicle; or

            (v)    Be considered a moving violation for purposes of § 16–402 of this article.

        (2)    Subject to the provisions of paragraph (3) of this subsection, a party, witness, or counsel may not make reference to a seat belt during a trial of a civil action that involves property damage, personal injury, or death if the damage, injury, or death is not related to the design, manufacture, installation, supplying, or repair of a seat belt required under this section.

        (3)    (i)    Nothing contained in this subsection may be construed to prohibit the right of a person to institute a civil action for damages against a dealer, manufacturer, distributor, factory branch, or other appropriate entity arising out of an incident that involves a defectively installed or defectively operating seat belt.

            (ii)    In a civil action in which 2 or more parties are named as joint tort–feasors, interpleaded as defendants, or impleaded as defendants, and 1 of the joint tort–feasors or defendants is not involved in the design, manufacture, installation, supplying, or repair of a seat belt, a court shall order separate trials to accomplish the ends of justice on a motion of any party.

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