Hudson County, NJ – Hudson County Sheriff Frank Schillari announced that the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office, will participate in the national Click It or Ticket campaign in an effort to save lives through increased seat belt use. This enforcement period comes ahead of the Memorial Day holiday, one of the busiest travel weekends of the year. The campaign begins May 23 and continues through June 5, 2016.

“According to research conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, while 88.5 percent of passenger vehicle occupants buckled up in 2015, almost 50 percent of occupants of fatal crashes nationwide are not restrained,” said Sheriff Schillari. “In some states, the rate is as high as 70 percent unrestrained in fatal crashes. This fact gravely highlights the need for increased enforcement and awareness of seat belt use.”

In addition to the increased enforcement on roads throughout the county, NHTSA is aiming to increase campaign participation even more this year by coordinating a “Coast to Coast” seat belt enforcement effort. As part of this effort the Sheriff’s Office will also focus on interstate corridors and main arteries that lead out of the state, such as Rt-440, Rt-495, and Rt. 1&9.

“As law enforcement, we have a special role in helping protect the safety of our citizens, from the East to the West Coast,” said Frank Schillari, Sheriff of Hudson County “When a driver or passenger fails to wear their seatbelt, the consequences could be deadly. The second it takes you to put your seatbelt on can save your life. We see the results of this deadly mistake all too often, seatbelts do save lives. “

In 2014, nearly half of the 21,022 passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes were unrestrained, according to NHTSA. During the nighttime hours of 6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m., that number increased to 57 percent of those killed. Law enforcement agencies will write citations day and night, with a zero-tolerance approach.

“Hundreds of thousands of citizens will be traveling this Memorial Day weekend, as well as throughout the summer vacation season. We want to make sure that people are buckling up to keep themselves and their families safe. It is the greatest defense in a vehicle crash,” said Sheriff Schillari

For more information on the Click It or Ticket campaign, you can contact the Sheriff’s Office Traffic Safety Unit at 201-915-1300, ext: 7050 or visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administrations website at www.nhtsa.gov/ciot.