Police are checking belts

| 22 Feb 2012 | 08:38

    Enforcement and education campaign conducted locally as part of nationwide click it or ticket mobilization Law enforcement officers in Vernon are cracking down on unbuckled motorists and their passengers during the national Click It or Ticket campaign. The program May 18 and continues through May 31. The annual initiative includes high visibility checkpoints and saturation patrols, as well as local and national publicity designed to underscore that “drivers and passengers recognize the life-saving value of seat belts,” police say. “Using a seat belt is the simplest way for a motorist and his or her passengers to protect themselves when on the road,” said Pam Fischer, director of the NJ Division of Highway Traffic Safety. “Motor vehicle occupants who buckle-up are between 45 and 75 percent less likely to face life threatening injuries in a crash.” Last year, the seat belt usage rate in New Jersey rose for the 12th consecutive year to 91.75 percent. Fischer noted that while seat belt usage rates continue to increase in New Jersey, law enforcement and safety officials will not rest until the state achieves 100 percent compliance. “New Jersey has one of the strongest seat belt usage rates in the nation, but our work isn’t done,” Fischer added. “To meet our goal, we must continue to focus on enforcement and public outreach efforts to educate motorists and their passengers about the critical importance of buckling up on every ride.” During the 2008 Click It or Ticket campaign, 473 police agencies participated in the two-week initiative and issued 46,026 seat belt citations, 6831 speeding summonses and made 642 drunk driving arrests. “Tickets are a strong deterrent and the results are meaningful: fewer deaths on our roads,” said Tom Louizou, Regional Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.