As motorists take to the roads this Memorial Day holiday, Batesville police are urging everyone to buckle up.
Beginning May 17, law enforcement officials have been out in full force, taking part in the 2013 national Click It or Ticket seat belt enforcement mobilization that runs through June 2.
Batesville Maj. Jeff Thielking said, “As we kick off the busy summer driving season, it’s important that everyone buckles up every time they go out, both day and night – no excuses. Our officers are prepared to ticket anyone who is not wearing a seat belt.” The Franklin County Sheriff’s Department will be participating in the blitz in cooperation with the Batesville Police Department, said FCSD Sgt. Jason Lovins. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (www.nhtsa.gov), 52 percent of the 21,253 passenger vehicle occupants killed in 2011 were not wearing their seat belts at the time of crashes.
Deaths involving seat belt nonuse are more prevalent at night than during the daytime. According to NHTSA, 62 percent of the 10,135 passenger vehicle occupants killed that year during the overnight hours of 6 p.m.-5:59 a.m. were not wearing their seat belts.
Thielking observed, “Seat belts save thousands of lives every year, but far too many motorists are still not buckling up, especially at night when the risk of getting in a crash is even greater. We want everyone to have a safe summer, but it requires an important step on the part of motorists – clicking that seat belt.”
In 2011, seat belts saved an estimated 11,949 lives nationwide, according to NHTSA.