That was the question on everyone’s mind the past two days at the Missouri Seat Belt Summit where safety experts from around the state gathered in Jefferson City to come up with a strategy for improving Missouri’s seat belt usage rate.
Seat belt use in Missouri has remained relatively unchanged in the last six years and consistently below the national average. Missouri has 77 percent seat belt usage, well below the national average of 84 percent. Missouri’s teen seat belt use is even lower at 61 percent. Seven out of 10 Missourians killed in traffic crashes are unbuckled.
Law enforcement officers will be cracking down on motorists who aren’t wearing seat belts May 24-June 6. The Missouri State Highway Patrol was present at the summit and made it clear that there is ZERO tolerance in Missouri for not wearing your seat belt.
Last year during the two-week Click It or Ticket campaign, 188 law enforcement agencies issued 7,243 seat belt and 243 child restraint violations. During the campaign, law enforcement also issued 10,322 speeding violations and made 375 DWI, 187 felony and 241 drug arrests.
Buckle up and encourage your loved ones to do the same. Wearing your seat belt costs you nothing and not wearing it can cost you everything.