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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 20, 2014

IDOT, ISP, Local Law Enforcement Encourage All Motorists to “Click It or Ticket” to Help Avoid Fatal Vehicle Crashes
Memorial Day Enforcement Effort to Crack Down on Unbuckled and Drunk Drivers

CHICAGO – With the arrival of Memorial Day and the start of the summer travel season, at several events throughout the state, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) today highlighted data showing the ages of individuals who have died unbelted in motor vehicle crashes in recent years. This data was stressed as a reminder to people of all ages as the Illinois State Police and over 500 local law enforcement agencies step up seat belt enforcement efforts heading into Memorial Day weekend as part of the “Click It or Ticket” campaign.

Starting today, and running through the holiday weekend, motorists will see hundreds of additional seat belt enforcement zones and other enforcement patrols looking for seat belt law violators and drunk drivers. This increased enforcement effort is part of the 2014 National Memorial Day Crackdown that started on May 9 in Illinois, and is intended to save lives by increasing seat belt use in Illinois and throughout the country.

Since 1985 in Illinois, IDOT estimates over 9,000 lives have been saved by seat belts. Illinois’ daytime, front-seat belt usage rate is almost 94 percent, yet motor vehicle fatality data shows people are still not buckling up.

“Even with a seat belt usage rate of nearly 94% in Illinois, motor vehicle crash data shows that half of those dying in vehicle crashes aren’t buckled,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann L. Schneider. “No matter where or when you’re traveling in Illinois, you must make the life-saving decision to buckle up.”
      
“Illinois State Police and law enforcement statewide will partner to enforce traffic laws so that the roads and motorists are safe. The highways will be busy and motorists and passengers are vulnerable when traffic laws are not followed,” said ISP Director Hiram Grau. “Police statewide will partner to enforce all traffic laws, but especially want the motoring public to remember to buckle up - that includes drivers and all passengers safely restrained inside the vehicle.”

Recent motor vehicle fatality data shows those dying in crashes while not wearing seat belts are older adults, not just teens and young adults.

“Individuals ages 21-34, and those aged 16-20, especially males in these age groups still represent over half of those dying unbuckled,” said Schneider. “However, older adults between the ages of 35-54 also represent a large portion of unbuckled motor vehicle deaths.”

From 2009-2013, 350 people ranging in age from 35-54 died on Illinois roadways while unbuckled. Of those, 265 were males and 85 females. In the same timeframe, 199 individuals aged 16-20 were killed while not wearing a seat belt; 114 between the ages of 55-64; 39 people aged 65.

Illinois Motor Vehicle Fatalities Not Using Seat Belt
2009-2013

(Drivers and occupants of passenger cars, pickup trucks, SUVs and vans/mini-vans)

 

 
Age and Gender
 
16-20
21-34
35-44
45-54
56-64
65 or older
 
M
F
M
F
M
F
M
F
M
F
M
F
Gender Total
132
67
377
125
144
42
121
43
79
35
95
44
Age Total
199
502
186
164
114
139


###

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