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Local Police: 'No Warnings and No Excuses'

Area police departments kick off the 2012 "Click It or Ticket" enforcement campaign.

Police departments in the region - including Ridgefield- have a message for motorists who refuse to wear their seat belts: beware.

Ridgefield is joining Bethel, Brookfield, Redding and Newtown police departments and highway safety advocates across the country to help save more lives by strongly enforcing seat belt laws around the clock during the 2012 Click It or Ticket campaign.

The effort kicks off today, Dec. 3, and extends through Dec. 16 to help save lives by cracking down on those who don't buckle up.

"Too many drivers and passengers on the road at night are not wearing their seat belts, and it all too often ends in tragedy," said Newtown Police Chief Michael Kehoe. "Our goal is to save more lives, so the Newtown Police Department joined by the Bethel, Brookfield, Redding and Ridgefield Police Departments will be out enforcing seat belt laws around the clock."

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2010 nationally, 61 percent of the 10,647 passenger vehicle occupants who were killed in motor vehicle crashes overnight (6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.) were not wearing their seat belts at the time of the fatal crash, compared to 42 percent during the daytime hours.

Seat belt use saves thousands of lives across America each year. NHTSA statistics show that in 2010 alone, seat belts saved an estimated 12,546 lives nationwide.

Younger motorists and men are particularly at risk. NHTSA data shows that among teen and young adult passenger vehicle occupants in 2010, ages 18-34, which were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes, 62 percent were not buckled up at the time of the crash — the highest percentage of any age group. The number jumps to 66 percent when just men in this age group are included.

While this year's Click It or Ticket campaign runs from Dec. 3 through Dec. 16, Newtown police said motorists should know that officers in the area are out enforcing seat belt laws year-round.

"Those who choose not to wear a seat belt will feel the heat from our officers who will be out cracking down on Click It or Ticket violators," Kehoe said. "Motorists should buckle up every time they go out, both day and night. Our officers are prepared to ticket anyone not buckled up ... no warnings and no excuses. Click It or Ticket."

The above report is based on a press release from the Newtown Police Department.

Ali Abdulah December 05, 2012 at 11:01 PM
Blah - I and 99.9% of Patch readers are in absolute agreement with you. The old chap really needs help.
Christine T December 06, 2012 at 01:17 AM
I actually didn't read the previous responses. I ALWAYS wear my seatbelt....but my feeling is that you shouldn't be penalizing people who do not wear their belt. They are only harming themselves if they get into an accident. You should be penalizing people who talk on their phones or text, or drive under the influence...because those are the people who will cause accidents with others and will potentially cause an accident with an innocent person.
COSMO P December 06, 2012 at 01:46 AM
COSMO P 8:40 pm on Wednesday, December 5, 2012 LANSING (WWJ/AP) – Michigan lawmakers have voted to repeal a state law that requires motorcyclists to wear helmets. The state Senate took a final vote on the proposal on Wednesday. I agree with Christine Using electronic devices while driving post a much greater risk than someone not wearing a belt. My friend was rear ended by a person on a cell phone and pushed his car in to 4 other cars at a stop light. So what is more dangerous. A person not wearing a belt and injures himself (debatable) Or someone hitting 5 cars talking on the phone. The phone talker is more danferous in my eyes.
Blah December 06, 2012 at 03:52 AM
Patch editors, please read the comment posted by Fu-Xu at 9:58 this evening. I think we have patiently put up with this poster for long enough. He must be banned. Children read this website. They come here for the sports scores and for the school news. Should they really be seeing the filth put up by Fu-Xu? Can you please remove his post and ban the poster. Lisa Buchman, I see you are a newer editor, just to make you aware, this has been going on here for far too long. Thank you.
COSMO P December 06, 2012 at 11:13 AM
@ Blah I find it startling how you don't understand what some are saying on this issue. Here is a fact 28-30% of all accidents in this country are caused by talking and texting while driving. That represents 1.4 million accidents and another 200K for texting. This represents millions of dollars in injuries and deaths. So please tell me how many accidents are caused by not wearing a seat belt. Your logic is way off as the body builder points out. All i want to know is with this increase use of electronic equipment and the skyrocketing of accidents and deaths because of it, Why clamp down on belt use. I would clamp down on distracted driving that has a 30% higher risk. Sorry to say Blah your priorities and evaluation of this issue is way off. Has your insurance increased 30% because of cell phone driving? You do make a very bad argument.

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