In anticipation of the heavily traveled 4-day Thanksgiving holiday weekend, troopers from the Nevada Department of Public Safety-Highway Patrol Division are joining forces with several law enforcement agencies from around the state for another “Click it or Ticket” enforcement period.
This enforcement period begins today and continues through November 30th.
In addition to the extra troopers on duty for this enforcement effort that was made possible with a grant funded by the Nevada Office of Traffic Safety, we want to also remind all motorists that buckling up is a two second task that could potentially save a life during an unplanned tragic event on any roadway.
We also want to stress that seatbelts need to be used every trip, every time, day or night, no matter how short that drive might be.
I have also included some additional information that was made available by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration detailing previous Thanksgiving holiday statistics and other important seatbelt-related information:
During the 2005 Thanksgiving holiday travel season, 732 passenger vehicle occupants were killed in motor vehicle crashes nationwide. Of those, 367 [50 percent] were unrestrained.
During the Thanksgiving holiday travel season in 2005, 376 passenger vehicle occupants were killed in motor vehicle crashes occurring during daytime (6am - 5:59pm) hours nationwide. Of those, 159 [42 percent] were unrestrained.
During the Thanksgiving holiday travel season in 2005, 347 passenger vehicle occupants were killed in motor vehicle crashes occurring during nighttime (6pm – 5:59am) hours nationwide. Of those, 205 [59 percent] were unrestrained
During the 2004 Thanksgiving holiday travel season, 68 Hispanic passenger vehicle occupants were killed in motor vehicle crashes nationwide. Of those, 29 [43 percent] were unrestrained.
Who’s not Buckling up—Daytime vs. Nighttime?
Fifty nine percent of the passenger vehicle occupants killed during the night were unbelted - compared to 44 percent during the day.
Also of great concern: belt use is much lower in the rear seat than the front. A detailed survey in 2005 showed that only 68 percent of rear seat passengers were belted compared to 82 percent in the front seat.
Men - especially younger men – are much less likely to buckle up than women. In 2005, 67 percent of male drivers and 74 percent of male passengers of passenger vehicles, between the ages of 18 and 34 who were killed in crashes were NOT wearing their seat belts.
According to NHTSA, pickup truck drivers and passengers consistently have the lowest seat belt usage rates of all motorists.
In 2005, the observed seat belt use rate in pickup trucks was only 73 percent compared to 83 percent in passenger cars and 85 percent in vans and SUVs.
This lack of seat belt use is deadly. In 2005, 65 percent of pickup truck occupants who were killed in traffic crashes were not buckled up.
Americans driving or riding on rural roadways also face a much greater risk of being injured or killed in traffic crashes than do those in urban or suburban areas.
Seat belt use in the nation’s rural areas consistently trails the national average.
Nationally, in 2005, only 79 percent of rural drivers and their passengers were observed wearing their seat belts compared to 81 percent for urban motorists and 83 percent among suburban motorists.
Children Must Be Properly Restrained, Too.
Parents are getting the message: 98 percent of all American infants under 1 year old are now restrained.
Unfortunately, more than 7 out of 10 child safety restraints are improperly used in ways likely to result in serious injury.
Older children need to be appropriately restrained, for their size and age.
One study showed that children who are moved from child safety seats to regular vehicle seat belts too early are four times more likely to sustain a serious head injury in a crash than those restrained in child safety seats or booster seats. The easiest way to remember is, “if they are under 4’ 9” tall, they need to be in a booster seat.”
For maximum child passenger safety, parents, grandparents and caregivers should always remember and follow The 4 Steps for Kids:
1. Use rear-facing infant seats in the back seat from birth to at least 1 year of age and until they weigh at least 20 pounds;
2. Use forward-facing toddler seats in the back seat from age 1 and at least 20 pounds to about age 4 and 40 pounds;
3. Use booster seats in the back seat from about age 4 to at least age 8, unless the child is 4‘9” tall.
4. Use seat belts when they fit appropriately, usually at age 8 and older or taller than 4‘9”. ALL children up to age 13 should ride in the rear seat.
For more information, please visit www.BuckleUpAmerica.org.