A new study across Europe found that the percentage of front seat occupants who wear seat belts out on the road varies from less than 70% to more than 95%.
Produced by the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC), the figures rank countries by their performance under the Road Safety Performance Index.
The ranking shows that in France, Germany and Malta more than 95% of front seat occupants wear a seatbelt.
It claims that in countries where seatbelt use is low, more than 20% of driver deaths could be prevented with better compliance.
The ranking also estimates that Germany’s death crash casualty rate would be twice as high were seatbelt use not so common.
In Sweden, Norway, the UK and the Netherlands, the figure is 90% and higher but in Belgium, Hungary and Italy the rates are around 70%. No rates are available for Greece, Lithuania and Slovakia, suggesting, the ETSC says, seatbelt usage is much lower.
The ETSC is calling on individual governments to do more to promote seatbelt use.
The ETSC report is available for viewing at www.etsc.be/PIN