Santa Monica Police is reminding everyone to buckle up when driving this holiday season as a part of 2009 holiday Click It or Ticket mobilization campaign. Officers will be out in force looking for anyone – driver, passenger or child – not properly restrained.
“Given the years of public awareness campaigns, including hundreds of Click It or Ticket highway signs, no warnings will be given out,” read a statement released Tuesday afternoon by the Santa Monica Police Department.
The Click It or Ticket campaign relies on heavy enforcement and education as a means to help save lives on California’s roadways.
“There is absolutely no question that seat belts save lives,” said Police Chief Timothy J. Jackman in the statement. “Buckling up will not only save you a heavy fine, it can also save your life.”
California has a seat belt usage rate of 95.4 percent, which means over 1.5 million people in the state are not buckling up. Properly restrained drivers, passengers and children have a 50 percent better chance of surviving a crash than unbelted occupants. Those ejected from vehicles in crashes or roll-overs are up to 35 times more likely to die than restrained occupants.
“There are no excuses. Nothing is worth risking the lives of you or your family,” said Christopher J. Murphy, Director of the California Office of Traffic Safety, in the statement. “This should be the season of joy and thanksgiving, not tragedy.”
More than 175 local law enforcement agencies statewide and the CHP will be participating in this year’s Click It or Ticket mobilization. Funding to support California’s Click It or Ticket campaign was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
The Santa Monica Police Department statement was prepared by Sgt. Jay Trisler, of Community Relations. Contact Santa Monica Police Department at 333 Olympic Drive, Santa Monica, CA 90401.