Arlington, VA

The Arlington County Police Department will be stepping up traffic enforcement over the next two weeks as part of the national Click It or Ticket campaign.

Thanks to grant money from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, police will be adding traffic patrols and HOV enforcement details around the county starting today. The patrols will primarily target school zones, frequent accident locations and areas identified by citizen complaints.

While the added ACPD patrols will be enforcing all traffic laws, the Click It or Ticket campaign specifically emphasizes seat belt laws, with the goal of “sav[ing] lives by cracking down on those who don’t buckle up.”

From a police press release:

While Virginia’s seat belt use rate increased slightly to 81.8%, up from 80.5% in 2010, there is still much work to be done. According to the DMV Highway Safety Office’s TREDS (Traffic Records Electronic Data System) in preliminary 2011 statistics, there were a total of 765 fatalities – 306 of them were unrestrained at the time of the crash. Of the total unrestrained fatalities (306), 93 or 30.39% of them were between the hours of midnight – 6:00 a.m. with 69.89% or 65 of those 93 between midnight and 3:00 a.m.

Regular seat belt use saves thousands of lives across Virginia each year. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) statistics show that in 2010 alone, seat belts saved an estimated 272 lives in Virginia. An additional 112 lives could be saved with 100 percent seat belt use.

While this year’s Click It or Ticket enforcement mobilization runs from May 21st – June 3rd, motorists should know that officers are out enforcing traffic laws, including seat belt laws year round.

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