Connecticut's Department of Public Health is recommending state lawmakers require everyone riding in a vehicle to wear a seat belt.
It marks the second year the state agency has proposed such a measure. Connecticut is currently one of about 20 states that do not require all rear-seat occupants to wear a seat belt.
Republican Rep. Mitch Bolinsky of Newtown, testifying Monday before the General Assembly's Public Health Committee, says people sitting in the backseat can become "human missiles" in a crash.
The National Transportation Safety Board says 169 vehicle occupants died in motor vehicle crashes in Connecticut in 2016. NTSB says half of those occupants were not using seat belts. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says Connecticut would save an additional 18 lives annually if everyone is required to be restrained.