HAMILTON, OH (FOX19) - Ohio is again participating in the national mobilization to remind Ohioans to buckle up – day and night. The Ohio Department of Public Safety's (ODPS) Office of Criminal Justice Services (OCJS), who will lead this campaign, joined Indiana and Kentucky in this announcement because buckling up saves lives.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2010 nationally, 61 percent of the 10,647 passenger vehicle occupants who were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes overnight (6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.) were not wearing their seat belts at the time of the fatal crash, compared to 42 percent during the daytime hours.
"Too many drivers and passengers on the road at night are not wearing their seat belts, and it all too often ends in tragedy," said ODPS Director Thomas P. Charles. "Our goal is to save more lives; therefore, our law enforcement partners will be out enforcing seat belt laws around the clock."
More than 900 law enforcement partners around Ohio, including the Ohio State Highway Patrol, will be aggressively enforcing the law during the mobilization, which runs May 21 through June 3.
In 2010, 22,187 passenger vehicle occupants were killed in motor vehicle crashes, according to NHTSA, and 51 percent of them were NOT wearing seat belts at the time of their fatal crashes. In 2011, nearly 65 percent of the people killed on Ohio's roadways were not wearing a safety belt.
And for those who simply refuse to buckle up... "There's always the thinking that its not going to be me. But there are a lot of dead people right now who didn't think it was going to be them," said Combs.
"If you have your seat belt on you're going to have a better chance at surviving," said Sergeant Pete Combs with the Patrol's Hamilton Post. "It's going to keep your head from going through the windshield which all kinds of bad things once you start doing that."