New South Wales taxi drivers will have to wear seatbelts under new laws that come into force today.
Taxi drivers in all other states and territories are bound by seatbelt laws, but in New South Wales they have been operating under an exemption since 1971.
The state's transport department says the change is long overdue and will give cabbies better protection.
However, Anne Turner from the New South Wales Taxi Drivers Association says buckling up will make it harder for drivers to flee during an assault.
"We want to be free to make decisions on our safety issues," she said.
"We have seen in the festive season, seven taxi drivers have been attacked and we do not have any road accidents.
"We do care for the public travelling on the road, but end of the shift, the NSW Taxi Drivers Association wants taxi drivers to go home safe and alive."