ConnDOT: Connecticut Department of Transportation Launches Click It or Ticket To Help Save Lives

FOR RELEASE: May 13, 2009
TELEPHONE: (860) 594-3062
FAX: (860) 594-3065

Connecticut Department of Transportation Launches Click It or Ticket To Help Save Lives

Enforcement Blitz ‘Buckling Down’

On Those Not Buckled Up—Day and Night


Newington CT. – Officials from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Federal Highway Administration, Connecticut Department of Public Safety, Connecticut Police Chiefs Association, Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles and the Connecticut Department of Transportation will join together on Thursday May 14, 2009, at 10 a.m. at the Department of Transportation, 2800 Berlin Turnpike, Newington to kick off the 2009 “Click it or Ticket” Campaign.  During 2007, more than 14,000 people in passenger vehicles nationwide died in crashes while unbelted.  About half of these lives could have been saved if they had been wearing seat belts at the time of the crash.  Fatalities are higher at night, according to new figures released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).


Nationwide in 2007, 14,464 passenger vehicle occupants died in highway crashes during evening and night-time hours (6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.), and 63 percent of those killed in crashes (8,319) were not wearing their seat belts.  By contrast, during daylight hours, 45 percent (5,917) of those killed were not wearing seat belts.


In Connecticut, 192 vehicle occupants died during 2007, and of those, 42 percent  were not wearing seat belts.


That’s why the Connecticut Department of Transportation is joining state and local law enforcement agencies and highway safety groups in supporting an aggressive national Click It or Ticket seat belt enforcement campaign from May 14 through June 3.  Police will be ticketing unbelted vehicle occupants around the clock.


“Consistent research has shown that fewer people are buckling up at night, when the risk of being in a fatal crash is greatest,” said Deputy Commissioner H. James Boice. So, State and Local police will be out in force at night as well as during the day to make sure that drivers and passengers take seat belts, and seat belt laws, seriously.” 


Boice added that regular seat belt use is the single most effective way to protect people and reduce fatalities in motor vehicle crashes.  He noted that, when worn correctly, seat belts have been proven to reduce the risk of fatal injury to front-seat passenger car occupants by 45 percent, and by 60 percent in pickup trucks, SUVs and minivans.


Despite the evidence, NHTSA observational studies show that nearly one out of five Americans still fails to wear a seat belt when driving or riding in a motor vehicle.


Stepped-up law enforcement activities will be conducted during the 2009 Click It or Ticket mobilization period from May 14 to June 3.  The mobilization is being supported by an $8 million national paid advertising campaign, which, along with additional state advertising, will encourage every driver and passenger to buckle up, especially at night.


“Seat belts clearly save lives. But, unfortunately, too many folks still need a tough reminder, so we are going to be out in force day and night in 2009 buckling down on those who are not buckled up,” said Boice.


“Wearing your seat belt costs you nothing, but not wearing it will.  So unless you want to risk a ticket, or worse, your life, please remember to buckle up night and day.  Don’t forget, Click It or Ticket isn’t just a campaign slogan, it’s a promise!” Boice said.


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