TRI-CITY AREA — To remind everyone about the importance of buckling up, the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning (OHSP) is launching a Click It or Ticket seat belt enforcement campaign that runs
now through June 6.

Officers from police departments, sheriff’s offices and the Michigan State Police will be conducting seat belt enforcement across the state during the three-week period. The campaign includes Memorial Day weekend.

“So often, critical injuries and the loss of life on our roadways could have been prevented with the simple click of a seat belt,” said Michael L. Prince, OHSP director.

“Wearing a seat belt is the easiest and most effective thing you can do to reduce injuries and save lives. Buckle up every trip, every time.”

In Michigan, 217 people killed in traffic crashes during 2019 were not wearing a seat belt.

During the 2019 Memorial Day weekend, there were 11 fatal crashes on Michigan roadways that resulted in 13 fatalities. Two of the 13 deaths involved a driver and a passenger not wearing seat belts.

In Michigan, the seat belt usage rate in 2019 was 94.4 percent. The national seat belt use rate in 2019 was 90.7 percent.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that seat belt use in passenger vehicles saved 14,955 lives nationwide in 2017. Seat belts are the single most effective way to stay alive in a crash. According to the NHTSA, buckling up in the front seat can reduce the risk of serious injury or death in a crash by 45 percent.

Michigan law requires drivers, front-seat passengers and passengers 15 and younger in any seating position to be buckled up. The fine and associated costs for not wearing a seat belt is $65.

Children must be in a car seat or booster seat until they are 8 years old or 4’9” tall, and children
under 4 years old must be in the back seat.

The OHSP coordinates the Click It or Ticket effort, which is supported by federal traffic safety funds.