Wearing a seat belt - Click It or Ticket campaign North Carolina
Image: Wikimedia Commons

The top five NC counties for seat belt violations during the Click It or Ticket enforcement period were Robeson, Wake, Wayne, Guilford, and Mecklenburg

The Governor's Highway Safety Program (GHSP) and the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) have announced that the annual "Click It or Ticket" campaign, which ran from May 23 to June 5, resulted in 8,483 seat belt and 873 child passenger safety citations being issued to drivers and passengers in North Carolina.

"The safety of everyone who travels our roadways is a top priority of Governor McCrory's agenda," said NC Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson. "The Click It or Ticket campaign reminds us that while we continue to make significant progress, we still have work to do to encourage passengers to buckle up in every seat, every time."

During the Click It or Ticket enforcement period, state and local law enforcement agencies across North Carolina held 6,343 checkpoints and stepped-up patrols, issuing a total of 77,622 traffic and criminal violations during that time.

The top five NC counties for seat belt violations during the Click It or Ticket enforcement period were:

Robeson – 446 violations
Wake – 368 violations
Wayne – 366 violations
Guilford – 361 violations
Mecklenburg – 338 violations

According to NCDOT, 173 people have been killed in auto accidents so far this year who were not wearing their seat belt. That is a 13.1 percent increase over the same time period last year. Forty-two percent of all traffic fatalities in 2015 were the result of a person making the choice to not wear a seat belt.

"As the summer travel season begins, we want to remind passengers that it is the law to wear your seat belt, regardless of where you are sitting," said Don Nail, director of the Governor's Highway Safety Program. "Buckling up takes three seconds and is a simple action that could save your life."

NCDOT says that increased enforcement efforts and public awareness campaigns are being used to get the state's seat belt usage rate back above 90 percent in 2016, after it dipped just below that figure in 2015.

A seat belt survey is currently being conducted in 25 North Carolina counties to help determine North Carolina's overall seat belt usage rate, as required by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The NC counties included in the survey are: Alamance, Brunswick, Buncombe, Cabarrus, Caldwell, Catawba, Columbus, Cumberland, Davidson, Durham, Forsyth, Franklin, Gaston, Guilford, Harnett, Johnston, Mecklenburg, Nash, Onslow, Robeson, Rockingham, Rowan, Sampson, Wake, and Wayne.

For county by county totals and more information regarding the Click It or Ticket program, contact Jonathan Bandy at 919-618-1974.

Content Published: Tuesday, June 14, 2016
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