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As the Memorial Day weekend approaches and the summer vacation season ramps up, state and local law enforcement officers will be sending a clear message to motorists to buckle up as part of the Click or Ticket campaign, which kicks off Friday, local agencies say.

About 10,000 law enforcement officers statewide, including the Garland County Sheriff's Department, Hot Springs Police Department and Arkansas State Police, will be out on the roads Friday through June 7 to "remind drivers and passengers to buckle their seat belts," a release said.

The annual "Click It or Ticket" campaign aims at enforcing seat belt use to help keep travelers safe as they drive to their summer destinations, sheriff's Deputy Courtney Kizer, the department's public information officer, said in a news release.

"Seat belt laws are enforced to protect drivers and their passengers from unnecessary injuries and death," HSPD Sgt. Eric Stockwell said in the release.

The campaign coincides with one of the busiest travel and holiday weekends each year, Stockwell said, noting National Highway Traffic Safety Administration analysis from 2018 documented 9,778 unbuckled passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes on U.S. roads. That same year, 56% of passenger vehicle occupants killed at night, from 6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m., were not wearing seat belts.

The statistical study has led law enforcement agencies to place additional emphasis on nighttime seat belt enforcement. Participating law enforcement agencies are taking a no-excuses approach to seat belt law enforcement, whether a violator is stopped day or night, Stockwell said.

According to NHTSA, 10,076 people who were killed in passenger vehicle crashes in 2017 weren't buckled, with 55% of those fatalities occurring at night, Kizer said.

"Please, help us spread this lifesaving message before one more friend or family member is killed as a result of this senseless inaction. Seat belts save lives, and everyone -- front seat and back, child and adult -- needs to remember to buckle up, every trip, every time," she said.

Visit http://www.nhtsa.gov/ciot for more information.

Local on 05/20/2020

Print Headline: Local, state law enforcement agencies will join 'Click It or Ticket' campaign

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