NEWTON COUNTY — Sheriff Ezell Brown, the Newton County Sheriff’s Office and the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety are reminding motorists not to risk it during this holiday season by always remembering to click their seat belt before every trip and to make sure all children are also safely restrained.
The Newton County Sheriff’s Office is joining sheriff’s offices, police departments and the Georgia State Patrol to enforce seat belt, speeding, DUI, distracted driving and all traffic laws during the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s annual “Click It or Ticket” seat belt enforcement and awareness mobilization that will take place during the extended Thanksgiving Holiday Weekend that beings on Nov. 22 and ends on Nov. 26.
Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel periods of the year with millions of vehicles traveling on Georgia highways and roads during the week and it is important for drivers and passengers to put safety first by always buckling up.
“Our deputies know the difference wearing a seat belt can make during a traffic crash,” Brown said. “Taking a few seconds to click a seat belt before getting on the road could lead to a lifetime of memories, especially during the holidays, with family and friends.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), seat belts have saved more than 100,000 lives in the last decade and more lives would be saved if everyone riding in a vehicle would wear a seat belt.
During the 2021 Thanksgiving holiday weekend that ran from Wednesday evening to early Monday morning, 50 percent of the persons killed in passenger vehicle crashes in the United States were not wearing seat belts.
Federal crash data shows during the 2021 Thanksgiving holiday weekend that 52 percent of persons killed in passenger vehicle crashes at night in the United States were not restrained and 46 percent of those killed in daytime crashes were not wearing seat belts.
Those riding in the back seat of a vehicle should also buckle up. Federal crash data shows almost 60 percent of the people riding in the back seats of vehicles who were killed in crashes in the United States in 2021 were not wearing a seat belt.
“Everyone is looking forward to spending time with family and friends during the holidays and we want everyone to make it safely to wherever they are traveling,” Governor’s Office of Highway Safety Director Allen Poole said. “Choosing to wear a seat belt could one day save your life, which is why buckling up should be the first thing we all do when we get into a vehicle.”
The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety and the Newton County Sheriff’s Office offer these safe driving tips:
1. Drive the speed limit. Speeding only increases the chances of being in a crash.
2. Do not try to make up time by speeding.
3. Keep your focus on the road by avoiding distractions such as electronic devices, conversations with passengers, eating, grooming and daydreaming.
4. Set mirrors and navigation devices before getting on the road.
5. Do not drive after drinking. Pass the keys to a sober driver.
More information can be found at gahighwaysafety.org.