SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Springfield Police Department has received a grant from the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security’s Office of Grants and Research (OGR) as part of an effort to remind people about using seatbelts.
Springfield and other police departments across the state will participate in the National “Click It or Ticket” enforcement campaign. The money will be used to increase patrols and remind drivers and passengers about how wearing a seat belt saves lives.
Massachusetts law requires every person in a passenger motor vehicle to wear a safety belt or if a child be properly restrained. Any driver who is stopped by a law enforcement officer for a primary traffic violation and is not wearing a safety belt can be fined $30. In addition, not wearing a seat belt is a primary offense for children under 13 years old. If a child is not wearing a seat belt the driver can receive a citation.
DATA Provided by the Executive Office of Public Safety:
- Massachusetts’ seat belt use rate is consistently lower than the national average, ranking 45th in the 2019 seat belt observational study.
- At 81.6% use, over 1.2 million Bay Staters still are not regularly buckling up. The national seat belt use rate is 90.7% (2019)
- In Massachusetts, a larger percentage of pickup trucks (71%) and SUVs (65%) fatalities are unrestrained compared to passenger cars (60%).
- According to NHTSA, seat belts saved an estimated 61 lives in Massachusetts in 2018.
- 68% of nighttime fatalities are unrestrained in Massachusetts compared to 55% of unrestrained daytime fatalities.
According to the state’s Transportation Safety website, safety belts reduced the risk of death by 45% among drivers and front-seat passengers, and cut the risk of serious injury by 50%.