The Colorado Department of Transportation cracked down on nighttime drivers not wearing their seat belts. According to the CDOT, seat belt use is consistently lower at night than during the day which results in an increased number of unbuckled fatalities.
The state teamed up with law enforcement agencies for its annual nighttime seat belt education and enforcement “Click It or Ticket,” which ran from July 21 through July 27.
“A lot of dangerous behavior seems to occur after the sun goes down,” said Col. Scott Hernandez, Chief of the Colorado State Patrol. “We consistently see an increase in DUIs and decrease in seat belt use at night, and the two are sometimes related – many impaired drivers don’t wear their seat belts. We’re doing this increased nighttime enforcement to crack down on this risky behavior and remind everyone that a seat belt can save your life, no matter what time it is.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, seat belt use has saved approximately $1.6 trillion in economic costs since 1975. Deaths and injuries resulting from nonuse of seat belts cost an estimated $14 billion each year in medical care, lost productivity and other injury related costs.
“Crashes have a cost for everyone involved,” said Darrell Lingk, Director of the Office of Transportation Safety at the Colorado Department of Transportation. “If you don’t wear your seat belt you will receive at least a $65 ticket. If you don’t wear your seat belt and are in a crash, the costs – both personal and financial – are much higher. And remember: seat belts are your best defense against an impaired driver.”
Seat belts saved an estimated 12,174 lives nationwide in 2012.