HDOT launches annual Click It or Ticket Hawaii campaign, May 21, 2018

Posted on May 18, 2018 in Highways News, Main, News

HONOLULU – To reduce motor vehicle fatalities and injuries, the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) and its traffic safety partners are participating in the national “Click It or Ticket” enforcement mobilization. All four county police departments will conduct increased enforcement during the May 21 through June 3 campaign. The main goal of this initiative is to keep drivers and passengers safe by reminding motorists to Click It or Ticket.

“The easiest thing you can do to protect yourself in your vehicle is to use the seat belt,” said HDOT Director Jade Butay. “Make sure all of your passengers are properly restrained by a seat belt or child restraint. Not only is it the law, it could save a life.”

To help spread awareness of the importance of wearing seat belts, HDOT is conducting an awareness campaign. Posters and banners were distributed statewide to county police departments and all Honolulu Fire Department stations.

A public service announcement is being aired on television and in movie theatres to remind the public about the campaign. Messages are also being displayed on all available HDOT electronic message boards statewide.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), an estimated 35 lives were saved based on Hawaii’s 95 percent seat belt use rate of 2016. Another three lives could have been saved if everyone in Hawaii had used their seat belt.

“We thank the four county police departments for joining us during the national Click It or Ticket campaign and for seat belt and child restraint enforcement day and night, year-round,” Butay said. “Seat belts save lives, remember to buckle up—every trip, every time.”

Law enforcement agencies in all four counties will be stepping up their enforcement activities during the Click It or Ticket mobilization period, taking a zero-tolerance approach to seat belt law enforcement. During federal fiscal year 2017, the four county police departments issued 16,329 citations for failure to use a seat belt and 1,736 citations for failure to use child restraints.

HDOT has issued federal grants to the four county police departments for overtime enforcement of Hawaii’s seat belt and child restraint laws.

Know Hawaii’s Seat Belt and Child Restraint Laws

Hawaii’s universal seat belt law requires that all front and back seat motor vehicle occupants buckle up. Adults and children must use their seat belts and child passenger restraints at all times. The fine for unrestrained occupants on Oahu, Hawaii and Maui is $102, and the fine on Kauai is $112. Drivers will receive one citation for every unrestrained occupant in the vehicle.

Hawaii’s Child Passenger Restraint law requires children under 4 years of age to ride in a child safety seat. The law also requires children 4 through 7 years old to ride in a child restraint or booster seat. Violators convicted of the child passenger restraint law are required to attend a four-hour class and be assessed a fine between $100 and $500, depending on the number of convictions.

National Seat Belt and Child Restraint Facts

  • In 2016, seat belts saved an estimated 14,668 lives of occupants five years of age and older. From 2012 to 2016, seat belts saved nearly 67,000 lives.
  • The national seat belt use rate in 2016 was 90.1 percent. The other 9.9 percent—an estimated 27.5 million people—still need to be reminded that seat belts save lives.
  • If all passenger vehicle occupants five years of age and older involved in fatal crashes had worn their seat belts, an additional 2,456 lives could have been saved in 2016.
  • Among young adults ages 18 to 34 killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2016, more than half (57 %) were completely unrestrained – one of the highest percentages for all age groups.
  • High-visibility seat belt enforcement is important 24 hours a day, but nighttime is especially deadly for unbuckled occupants. In 2016, 56 percent of passenger vehicle occupants killed at night (6 p.m. – 5:59 a.m.) were not wearing their seat belts.
  • Too many people wrongly believe they are safe in the back seat unrestrained. Forty-seven percent of all front-seat passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes in 2016 were unrestrained, but 57 percent of those killed in back seats were unrestrained.
  • Child passenger restraints can reduce deaths by as much as 71 percent for infants and 54 percent for toddlers.
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics advises parents and caregivers to keep their toddlers in rear-facing child safety seats until age two or until they reach the maximum height and weight for their seat. It also advises that most children need to ride in a belt-positioning booster seat until they have reached four feet nine inches tall and are between eight and 12 years of age.

During the national Click It or Ticket mobilization, and throughout the year, police statewide will continue strict enforcement of the state seat belt and child passenger restraint laws. This media and enforcement campaign is 100 percent federally funded by NHTSA.

For more information on the Click It or Ticket mobilization, please visit www.nhtsa.gov/ciot