PIKE COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Kentucky State Police warn if you drive without wearing your seat belt this Memorial Day Weekend, you will get a ticket.
The national "Click It or Ticket" campaign kicked off Monday, and officers were out in full force to make sure folks followed the law and stayed safe.
KSP officers from Post 9 in Pikeville and Post 13 in Hazard set up a traffic safety checkpoint along U.S. 23 on the Pike County and Letcher County border.
"We're out here for the Memorial Day Weekend to ensure that motorists travelling within the Commonwealth and through the Commonwealth are safe doing so, that they reach their destination safely, and part of that is making sure that they wear their seat belts," said Trooper Shaun Little of Post 9.
Officers say they want to improve the rate of Kentucky drivers who wear their seat belts on a consistent basis. Kentucky's rate is 85 percent, while the national average it 87 percent.
Officers say they'll be on the lookout for fake-outs: tricks people sometimes use to try to hide the fact that they aren't actually wearing their seat belt.
"We want people to understand that it's as easy to put it on prior to leaving where you're coming from as it is to put it on when you see us," said Little.
Last year, 638 people died in Kentucky roadway accidents. Of those, 278 were drivers or passengers who were not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.
"If you're in an accident and you have your seat belt on, if you lose control of your vehicle, you're more likely to be able to regain control if you stay stationary in your seat," Little said. "That comes with wearing your seat belt."
Officers will also be checking for impaired driving, distracted driving and other violations, and if you are caught breaking the law, officers say they will not hesitate to take you to jail.
The "Click It or Ticket" enforcement campaign runs through June 1st.