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Local seat belt patrols return May 19
Snohomish County Washington State Patrol will be patrolling Everett and Marysville during the Click It or Ticket campaign which runs through June 1.
Following last year's nighttime Click It or Ticket seat belt enforcement patrols during May and October 2007, officials concluded that the campaign may have been a factor in lowering Washington's Vehicle Fatality Rate.
According to preliminary numbers, nighttime vehicle occupant deaths were 13 percent lower during 2007 (216 deaths versus the 247 average for the previous ten years) and daytime vehicle occupant deaths were down 21 percent (194 deaths during 2007 versus the 245 average for the previous 10 years).
"We have a number of projects underway that are designed to reduce the number of traffic deaths on our roadways. We are evaluating their effectiveness and early results indicate that the nighttime seat belt patrols are producing positive outcomes," said Steve Lind, Traffic Safety Commission Acting Director.
The extra patrols are funded by a grant from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.
During the most recent Nighttime Seatbelt emphasis in October 2007, law enforcement officers statewide made 7,524 contacts with motorists and intercepted a large number of high-risk drivers, who are more likely to be involved in fatal or serious injury collisions including:
3,769 seatbelt and car seat violations.
72 drunk driver arrests.
89 drug arrests, including 11 for drug impaired driving.
57 reckless and aggressive driving violations.
64 felons arrested and taken to jail and another 110 criminal arrests.
4 stolen cars were recovered.
282 motorists had no valid driver license.
478 motorists had no insurance.
This May, the patrols will be conducted in the same manner as before, involving both an observational officer and patrol vehicles. When an unbuckled motorist is spotted, the observing officer radios ahead to the patrol vehicle to make the stop.
"The Click It or Ticket seat belt patrols were directed to take place after 7 p.m. because the death rate is four times higher at night than it is during the day," Lind said.