Too much turkey is no excuse for not buckling up
Special Click It or Ticket enforcement mobilization aimed at
increasing seat belt use and saving lives
FRANKFORT, Ky. – With the holidays upon us, millions of Americans are hitting the road to visit with family and friends. The Kentucky Office of Highway Safety (KOHS) wants every celebration to be a joyous occasion, so it’s reminding travelers that state and local law enforcement will be out in force from Nov. 15 to Nov. 28, sending the strong message to Click It or Ticket.
“No one wants to start off the holidays with a ticket,” said Transportation Cabinet Secretary Mike Hancock. “Save your money for turkey and buying presents for loved ones – don’t throw it away simply because you failed to buckle up.”
While seat belt use is at a record high of 84 percent nationwide, Kentucky lags behind with an 80 percent usage rate. Statistics for 2009 indicate 398 (61.3 percent) of the 649 people who were killed in motor vehicles last year in Kentucky were not wearing a seat belt.
“Sadly, the holidays, which for many are the happiest time of the year, is also one of the deadliest and most tragic,” said KOHS Executive Director Chuck Geveden. “Clearly this is an indication that people are just not aware of the huge risk taken by not buckling up.”
In Kentucky last year there were 1,120 crashes over the Thanksgiving holiday, resulting in 330 injuries and seven fatalities. Of those fatalities, five were unrestrained.
“Wearing a seat belt costs you nothing, but not wearing it could cost you a ticket or worse…your life,” said Geveden. “We want all drivers and passengers to Click It or Ticket, day and night.”
Regular seat belt use is the single most effective way to protect people and reduce fatalities in motor vehicle crashes, according to NHTSA. Research has shown that when lap and shoulder belts are used properly, the risk of fatal injury to front-seat passenger car occupants is reduced by 45 percent, and the risk of moderate to serious injury is reduced by 50 percent.
For more information about the Click It or Ticket seat belt enforcement campaign for highway safety during Thanksgiving, please visit www.trafficsafetymarketing.gov and http://highwaysafety.ky.gov.