SPRINGFIELD– The Illinois Department of Transportation joined Illinois State Police and local law enforcement agencies today to honor survivors of motor vehicle crashes whose lives were saved by wearing a seat belt and to encourage all motorists to “Click It or Ticket” as we enter the busy summer travel season.
“With Memorial Day weekend approaching, more vehicles will be on the roads as people enjoy the start of summer,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “With increased traffic comes an increased risk for crashes. We urge everyone to be responsible on the road by buckling up and ensuring everyone in your vehicle is properly buckled.”
The “Saved by the Belt” award is given by IDOT to individuals who avoided serious injury or death because they were properly restrained. Law enforcement officials and first responders nominate potential awardees based on evaluation of crash reports.
Crash data from 2011 to 2015 shows an estimated 1,895 lives were saved in Illinois because of seat belt use. Illinois law requires every vehicle occupant to wear a seat belt.
Through Memorial Day, motorists can expect to see increased patrols and enforcement zones statewide as part of IDOT’s “Click It or Ticket” mobilization. Law enforcement will be looking for seat-belt violations and signs of impaired driving.
The 14 weeks between Memorial Day and Labor Day typically are the deadliest on Illinois roads. The simple act of buckling up and driving responsibly can help IDOT reach its ultimate goal of zero traffic fatalities in Illinois.
“As we kick off the busy summer driving season, it’s important for everyone to buckle up every trip, every time, day or night,” said Illinois State Police Director Leo P. Schmitz. “Seat belts save thousands of lives each year. Start your summer off right, protect yourself and your loved ones by buckling up. We want everyone to arrive at their destination safely.”
For more information on “Click It or Ticket” or “Saved by the Belt,” visit buckleupillinois.org.