Buckle Up America

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 [Local Organization] Joins State and Federal Partners to
      Boost Iowa Seat Belt Use—and to Save Lives.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 46 percent of all
passenger vehicle occupants killed in motor vehicle crashes in Iowa in 2005 were not wearing
their seat belts at the time of the crash.

That’s why [Local Law Enforcement Organization] is joining with state officials to launch
several special ―Click It or Ticket‖ enforcement mobilizations throughout the year and
beginning this February to boost Iowa’s seat belt use and to reduce highway fatalities.

Although Iowa’s observed seat belt rate is now 90 percent, up 15 percent since 1997, young
males, pickup truck drivers and their passengers, people who live in rural areas, and nighttime
drivers are still among those least likely to buckle up.

Iowa has been selected as one of three states in America to develop this intensified year-round
seat belt enforcement program—focused on getting all drivers and passengers to buckle up.

Nationally, men – especially younger men – are much less likely to buckle up. In 2005, 67
percent of male drivers and 74 percent of male passengers between the ages of 18 and 34 who
were killed in crashes were not wearing their seat belts at the time of the crash.

In addition, Americans driving or riding on rural roadways face a much greater risk of being
injured or killed in traffic crashes than do those in urban or suburban areas—mainly due to
lower seat belt use. During 2005, 88 percent of Iowa’s total traffic fatalities occurred in rural

Nationally, in 2006, only 78 percent of rural drivers and their passengers were observed
wearing their seat belts compared to 79 percent for urban motorists and 84 percent among
suburban motorists.

Regular seat belt use is the single most effective way to protect people and reduce fatalities in
motor vehicle crashes. In 2005, 77 percent of passenger vehicle occupants in a fatal crash who
were buckled up, survived the crash, and that when worn correctly, seat belts have proven to
reduce the risk of fatal injury to front-seat passenger car occupants by 45 percent – and by 60
percent for occupants of pickup trucks, SUVs and mini-vans.

Too many people still take the attitude that it will never happen to me. But fatal crashes can
and do happen every day. A lot of progress has been made, but there are just still too many
unrestrained fatalities in our state. That’s why this February and throughout the year, there will
be increased enforcement across the state to ensure that all passengers—in all vehicles—both
adults and children, in the front and the back, are buckled up.

Seat belts clearly save lives. But unfortunately, too many Iowans still need a tough reminder.
Unless you want to risk a ticket, or worse - your life, please remember to always ―Click It or
Ticket‖ day and night.

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