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Post Date:05/17/2019 3:42 pm

To remind motorists that seat belts save lives and it’s the law to buckle up, law enforcement agencies in Clay County, along with more than 300 law enforcement agencies across the state, will be participating in the statewide Click It or Ticket campaign May 20 – June 2. The Department of Public Safety Office of Traffic Safety coordinates the extra enforcement and education campaign.

Join the Crowd
Most Minnesotans are making the life-saving decision to buckle up. According to the 2018 Minnesota Seat Belt Survey, 92.4 percent of front seat occupants are wearing their seat belts. Unfortunately, that means more than 7 percent of motorists continue to risk their lives and the lives of those in the vehicle by failing to buckle up.

For those not choosing to buckle up, the results are tragically hurting families across Minnesota.
• 172 unbelted motor vehicle occupants experienced life-changing injuries in 2018.
• In 2018, nearly 70 percent of the unbelted deaths occurred in Greater Minnesota (outside the seven-county metro area).
• In 2018, 36 percent of all motor vehicle deaths involved unbelted occupants, compared with 32 percent in 2017.
• Children are paying with their lives if they are not in proper car seats.From 2014 – 2018 in Minnesota:
17 children (ages 0-7) were killed in motor vehicles and only seven of the victims were known to be properly secured (5 were not properly restrained, and restraint use was unknown in 5 fatalities). Of the 90 children (ages 0-7) seriously injured in motor vehicles, only 49 percent of the victims were known to be properly secured.

The Law is for Safety
Minnesota law states that drivers and passengers in all seating positions must be buckled or seated in the correct child restraint. Officers will stop and ticket unbelted drivers or passengers. Seat belts must be worn correctly — low and snug across the hips, and shoulder straps should never be tucked under an arm or behind the back.

Toward Zero Deaths
The Click It or Ticket seat belt enforcement and education is a grant funded component of the state’s Toward Zero Deaths (TZD) program. A primary vision of the TZD program is to create a safe driving culture in Minnesota in which motorists support a goal of zero road fatalities by practicing and promoting safe and smart driving behavior. TZD focuses on the application of four strategic areas to reduce crashes – education, enforcement, engineering, emergency medical and trauma response and everyone.

Capt. Deric Swenson, 218.299.5186

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