[ The Real McCoy Online Home ]                                                                                                                        May 23, 2008
News

Click It or Ticket campaign 
under way in Wisconsin

      WISCONSIN DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, Madison, Wis. -- To save lives and prevent serious injuries on Wisconsin roads, approximately 350 law enforcement agencies throughout the state will mobilize for the national "Click It or Ticket" safety-belt campaign, which will run through June 1.

      Fort McCoy will be participating in the campaign, said Sgt. Domenic Modica, Fort McCoy Traffic sergeant.

      This year's Click It or Ticket is the largest coordinated law enforcement mobilization ever in Wisconsin. Officers will be patrolling in greater numbers and for longer hours to enforce the state's mandatory safety-belt law.

       In addition, Click It or Ticket safety-belt messages will be broadcast on television and radio stations.

      "The Click It or Ticket message is simple. If you are stopped by an officer and aren't wearing a safety belt, you will get a ticket. And with a recent change in state law, drivers also may get a ticket for every unbuckled passenger in their vehicle. There'll be no warnings or second chances," says Wisconsin State Patrol Superintendent David Collins. "Our goal is not to write more tickets but to save lives and prevent needless injuries by increasing voluntary compliance with Wisconsin's safety- belt law."

      This year marks the 20th anniversary of the enactment of Wisconsin's mandatory safety-belt law. Since 1988, there have been more than 1.3 million convictions for failure to fasten safety belts, making it the state's second most common traffic offense (speeding is number one).

      Safety-belt use now is at an all-time high in Wisconsin with three out of four people buckling up. However, the state's safety-belt use rate of 75 percent lags behind the national average of 82 percent.

      Because safety-belt use declines at night (according to national studies), the Click It or Ticket campaign will strive to convince motorists to buckle up every time they drive or ride -- day or night.

      An analysis by the State Patrol Bureau of Transportation Safety showed that from 1996 through 2006, approximately three out of five people who were killed or suffered incapacitating injuries in Wisconsin traffic crashes between the hours of 6 p.m. and 4 a.m. were not belted.

      "Buckling up every time -- day or night -- provides the most effective protection against being ejected from a vehicle or thrown around violently inside it during a crash," says Collins. "Every time you get in a car or truck -- whether you're driving across the state or just down the block -- you're putting your life on the line. And the few seconds it takes to buckle up can save you, your family and your friends from ending up at the emergency room, or worse yet, the morgue."

      Personnel driving on Fort McCoy should be knowledgeable about all federal laws, which include limiting drivers' use of cell phones to hands-free variety, as well as mandatory safety-belt use, Modica said.

      For more information, call Modica at (608) 388-2044.

 

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