Nevada Highway Patrol officers will be out and about “during high times of traffic” starting Monday, and any drivers they pull over who are not wearing their seatbelts will be ticketed — “no warning,” said Loy Hixson, spokesman for highway patrol’s southern Nevada command.
The enforcement is part of Nevada’s annual Click It or Ticket campaign, a push to remind the public that wearing a seatbelt “dramatically increases your chance of surviving” in a car crash, Hixson said.
The campaign stems from a federal effort by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and Hixson said Nevada’s runs through Dec. 7.
“This is generally when we kick off (the campaign) because more people are going to travel,” Hixson said. “With the holidays coming up, we see more people on the road and unfortunately we see an increase in vehicle collisions.”
Hixson said patrol officers will not be targeting people who are not wearing seatbelts. In Nevada, not wearing a seatbelt is a secondary violation, which means someone cannot be ticketed for it unless they have committed another infraction, such as speeding or being on the phone. Instead, he said, the enforcement period “is about saving your life.”
“This is something we want people to do every day, every time they get into their vehicle,” Hixson said. The fine for a seatbelt citation typically is about $70.
According to the Nevada Departments of Public Safety and Transportation, not wearing a seatbelt makes drivers four times more likely to be ejected from a vehicle and 75 percent more likely to be killed in a rollover crash. In 2011, 43 percent of Nevadans killed in accidents were not wearing seatbelts.
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