As the unofficial start of summer, the Memorial Day holiday weekend is a busy time for Americans. Each year, the highways fill up with families in vehicles, on their way to start their summer vacations. To help keep drivers and passengers stay safe, Wilton Police Department is reminding motorists to Click It or Ticket. Aimed at enforcing seat belt use to help keep families safe, the national seat belt campaign will take place May 21 through June 3, concurrent with the busy travel season.
“Buckling up is such a simple task that can keep you and your family safe in the car,” said Lt. Rob Kluk of the Wilton Police Department. “But it’s more than that. Buckling up is the law. Our law enforcement personnel see the consequences of not buckling up. We see the loss of life. Often, it could have been prevented with the simple click of a seat belt. This should be automatic.”
Kluk says that the enforcement effort will show zero tolerance.
“As the Memorial Day weekend approaches and the summer vacation season ramps up, we want to keep our community members safe, and make sure that people are doing the one thing that can save them in a crash: buckling up,” he says. “If the enforcement crackdown wakes people up to the dangers of unrestrained driving, we’ll consider it a success.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, nearly half (48%) of the passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes in 2016 were unrestrained. At night from 6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m., the number soared to 56% of those killed. That’s why one focus the Click It or Ticket campaign is nighttime enforcement. Participating law enforcement agencies will be taking a no-excuses approach to seat belt law enforcement, writing citations day and night. In Connecticut, the maximum penalty for a seat belt violation is $98.
“If you know a friend or family member who does not buckle up when they drive, please ask them to consider the changing of their habits,” Kluk adds. “Help us spread this life-saving message before one more friend or family member is killed as the result of this senseless inaction. Seat belts save lives, and everyone–front seat and back, child and adult–needs to remember to buckle up–every trip, every time.”
For more information on the Click It or Ticket Mobilization, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website.