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Monday, October 20, 2014

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Crackdown on seatbelt, cell phone scofflaws hits the road

Updated 12:38 pm, Saturday, November 26, 2011

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  • Officer Gary Wikman pulls over a car whose driver was not wearing a seatbelt during  "Click It or Ticket" enforcement. Photo: Genevieve Reilly / Fairfield Citizen
    Officer Gary Wikman pulls over a car whose driver was not wearing a seatbelt during "Click It or Ticket" enforcement. Photo: Genevieve Reilly

 

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A little more than halfway through a two-week "Click It or Ticket" enforcement, Fairfield police had handed out 372 infractions and misdemeanors as of Nov. 22.

"Law enforcement will be cracking down on Click It or Ticket violators around the clock," said police Sgt. Robert Kalamaras. "Local motorists should be prepared to buckle up. If law enforcement finds you on the road unbuckled anytime or anywhere, you can expect to get a ticket -- not a warning. No excuses and no exceptions."

The enforcement campaign continues through Sunday.

Last last Friday morning, four officers were at Chambers and Johnson streets, near the entrance to Interstate 95. There was no shortage of motorists to pull over, including one man who had to slam on his brakes to avoid hitting the car in front of him, which had stopped for the stop sign. That driver also found himself on the receiving end of a ticket for talking on his cell phone. And the driver of the car he almost hit got a ticket for not wearing a seatbelt.

The Click It or Ticket crackdown is in effect day and night, with nighttime enforcement a priority, police said. Statistics show that people are less likely to buckle up at night and more likely to die in crashes when unrestrained. Of those who died in nighttime crashes in 2009, 62 percent were not wearing seat belts at the time of the fatal crashes.

"Many more nighttime traffic deaths can be prevented if more motorists simply start wearing their seat belts," Kalamaras said.