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Increased police, highway patrols to enforce seat belt laws

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RONAN – Emphasizing the importance of wearing a seat belt, the national Click It or Ticket  law enforcement Memorial Day mobilization will begin May 22 and run through June 4. During this traditional kick-off to the summer travel season, the Montana Highway Patrol will join the Ronan Police Department in extra patrols to help educate the public on the use of seat belts, enforce Montana seat belt laws and to save lives. 

“Along with other law enforcement around the state, the Ronan Police Department will be increasing patrols in our area,” said Ronan Chief of Police Kenneth J. Weaver. “And while our goal is to save lives and increase awareness, if you are pulled over and you are not wearing a seat belt, you will be ticketed.”

Car crashes are one of the top five causes of death in Montana. In the last five years, an average of 67 percent of those who died on Montana’s roadways in vehicles with seat belts were not wearing them.  In 2015, Montanans reported wearing seat belts 76 percent of the time—14.1 percent lower than the current national average of 90.1 percent.

In a car crash, there are three main collisions. The first is a vehicle hitting an object; the second is a human hitting an object at the speed the vehicle was going before the collision; the third is internal, where organs collide with other organs and bones. “That’s what we’re looking to decrease: fatalities,” said Mike Tooley, director of the Montana Department of Transportation. “Participating in Click It or Ticket and increasing patrols during this time move us one step closer to achieving our vision of zero deaths and injuries on our roads.”

The extra traffic safety patrols are funded by the Montana Department of Transportation. This and other enforcement and education campaigns are strategies to reach Vision Zero—zero deaths and zero serious injuries on Montana roadways.  For more information about Vision Zero, contact Charity Watt at the Montana Department of Transportation, 406-444-3439,


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