[Licking County, OH] – From May 23 to June 5, 2016, local law enforcement personnel will participate in the national Click It or Ticket campaign in an effort to save lives through increased seat belt use. This enforcement period comes ahead of the Memorial Day holiday, one of the busiest travel weekends of the year.
According to research conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), while 88.5 percent of passenger vehicle occupants buckled up in 2015, almost 50 percent of occupants of fatal crashes nationwide are not restrained. In some states, the rate is as high as 70 percent unrestrained in fatal crashes. The 2015 seat belt rate for Licking County falls right below the national average, at 87.6 percent. This fact gravely highlights the need for increased enforcement and awareness of seat belt use.
This year, NHTSA is aiming to increase campaign participation even more by coordinating a “Coast to Coast” seat belt enforcement effort, to include all law enforcement around specific interstate corridors, such as I-10, I-40, I-70, and I-80. This effort does not limit Click It or Ticket enforcement to these corridors or prevent states from participating in the campaign; rather, these corridors will serve to link and highlight the “Coast to Coast” seat belt enforcement effort. All law enforcement agencies can join the effort to emphasize the “Coast to Coast” effort.
“As law enforcement, we have a special role in helping protect the safety of our citizens, from the East to the West Coast,” said Lt. Kevin Miller, Ohio State Highway Patrol Granville Post Commander. “Time after time, we see the deadly results that come from drivers and passengers refusing to wear a seat belt. Wearing a seat belt is one of the most important steps in increasing survivability in a crash. Our job is to stop those who are not buckled up, and to keep them from repeating this potentially deadly mistake.” From 2012-2014, 53 percent of fatal crashes with belts available were unrestrained in Licking County.
The Licking County Safe Communities Coalition will be participating alongside local law enforcement to support the Click It or Ticket
campaign. On May 21st
, the Coalition will be hosting a kick-off event with TrueCore Federal Credit Union on Deo Dr. in Newark. The Coalition is partnering with TrueCore’s Annual Car Bazaar Event. In addition to the Car Bazaar, the Coalition will have a table, information on seat belts, a prize wheel, and a seat belt simulator. “Every year, we see multiple deaths in Licking County that could have been prevented by simply taking 3 seconds to buckle up,” said Carrie Minor, Safe Communities Coordinator at the Licking County Health Department. “Educating and raising awareness about seat belt use is a high priority of the Coalition.”
For more information on the Click It or Ticket
campaign, please visit www.nhtsa.gov/ciot
for information about the kick-off event.