From the Essex County Sheriff:
Essex County Sheriff Armando Fontoura today advised motorists that officers from his department will join with Essex County municipal police departments and with police from around the country in cracking down on unbuckled drivers and passengers as part of the national “Click It or Ticket” campaign.
“The enforcement and education program will begin May 23 and run through June 5,” Sheriff Fontoura said. “Our department and municipal police will establish high visibility seat belt checkpoints and saturation patrols to underscore the life-saving value of seat belts.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 32,000 people died in motor vehicle accidents in 2015. “Nearly half of passenger vehicle occupants killed were not wearing seat belts,” Sheriff Fontoura noted.
A key focus of this year’s safety campaign is to promote seat belt usage by adults in the rear seats of vehicles. “The front seat belt usage rate in New Jersey currently stands at over 91%,” Fontoura pointed out. “However, adults riding in rear seats are only buckling up at a rate of 39%.
During last year’s “Click It or Ticket” campaign, Essex County sheriff’s officers issued a total of 702 motor vehicle summonses. A breakdown of those violations reveals:
377 for failure to wear a seat belt; 14 for driving children with no restraints; 4 for speeding; 30 for cell phone usage while driving; 30 for driving while on suspended list; 2 for careless driving; and, 247 for other motor vehicle violations. In addition, 33 drivers and/or passengers were arrested on criminal charges and 28 motor vehicles were towed.
“The purpose of the seat belt campaign is to make the Essex County community safer for all those riding in motor vehicles,” Sheriff Fontoura said.