Once again, the Office of Highway Safety (OHS) and law enforcement across Delaware are reminding motorists that your safety is in your hands and to always buckle up as the Click It or Ticket campaign kicks off May 11. As part of the national seat belt enforcement campaign, Delaware law enforcement agencies will be stepping up enforcement May 11 through 25, just prior to one of the busiest travel weekends of the year.
“Every day, unbuckled motorists lose their lives in motor vehicle crashes,” said Kim Chesser, OHS Occupant Protection program manager. “As we approach Memorial Day weekend and the summer vacation season, we want to remind people to buckle up. Buckling up will keep you from getting a ticket, and more importantly, it could save your life.”
Whether you’re the driver or a passenger, Delaware law requires everyone in the vehicle to buckle up every trip, every time. The cost of not using one just isn’t worth it. Motorists who are not in compliance with state seat belt laws face fines and court costs up to $83.50.
The Click It or Ticket campaign is credited with motivating millions of motorists to always use their seat belts. Only 71 percent of Delawareans used seat belts when the campaign began in 2002. Today 92 percent of Delawareans buckle up. In 2014, there were 35 fatalities in Delaware resulting from crashes in which drivers or passengers were not wearing seat belts. Wearing a seat belt increases the chances of surviving a serious crash by 50 percent. In pickup trucks, that number jump to 60 percent as those vehicles are more likely than cars to roll over in a crash. In roll over crashes, seat belts help keep occupants from being ejected from the vehicles.
In addition to stepped-up enforcement, Click It or Ticket will include paid media in the form of TV, billboards, online advertising, and more. OHS will also promote seat belt safety through community outreach, social media, and public awareness activities including seat belt checks, dispelling the myths of non-seat belt users on www.buckleupde.org, seat belt educational activities at Dover International Speedway, and a seat belt challenge to all the high schools in Delaware.
The OHS will be conducting a contest among Delaware high schools to see which one has the highest increase in seat belt use. Each school resource officer (SRO) will be asked to conduct a seat belt check, then recruit a team of student volunteers to conduct seat belt educational activities and outreach for one week in their respective high schools. The SRO will then conduct another seat belt check and the school with the highest percentage increase in seat belt use will win. The winning SRO will be the Grand Marshal for the Buckle Up 200 presented by the Click It or Ticket NASCAR Xfinity series race on Saturday May 30th at Dover International Speedway. The winning team of student volunteers will receive a pizza party donated by Grottos pizza and the winning school will receive a banner to display outside their school and on their website. For more information, families re encouraged to visit Learn more about seat belts by visiting www.buckleupde.org.