101 Town Center, P.O. Box 5655, Bella Vista, AR 72714 (479)876-1255

Buckle up: Click it or Ticket starting May 23

It is illegal every day to drive without wearing a seatbelt, but for two weeks starting May 23, if you are unbuckled Bella Vista officers will be looking for you.

Bella Vista Police Department is teaming up with law enforcement agencies nationwide for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) national Click It or Ticket high-visibility enforcement May 23 through June 5. Drivers can expect to see increased enforcement of traffic and vehicle safety, when we will be conducting extra patrols on the lookout for those not wearing seatbelts, including during safety checkpoints.

Drivers in the U.S. are typically smart about seatbelts, and the national seat belt use rate in 2020 was just over 90 percent of those traveling by car. That number is good, but that almost 10 percent still puts their lives at risk every time they get behind the wheel.

Among adults ages 18 to 34 that were killed in car accidents in 2020, more than half were not wearing a seatbelt, according to the NHTSA. This is one of the highest percentages for all age groups, but men make up the majority of those killed in crashes while unrestrained.

It doesn’t matter what kind of car you are driving, where in the car you are seated or where you are located, such as in a city or on a backcountry road. Vehicle crashes can happen at any time and in any location, and the best protection you have to save your life is simple: buckle up.

Arkansas law requires all front seat passengers to be buckled properly. Children less than 16 years of age should also be properly secured in the vehicle, no matter where they are sitting. Smaller children – less than 6 years old or less than 60 pounds – should be restrained properly in a child safety seat. All passengers in a vehicle must be buckled if the driver has a restricted license.

Wearing your seatbelt properly can also help save your life. Place the shoulder strap across the chest and shoulder with as little slack as possible, and never under an arm or behind the back.

For more information about this mobilization, visit www.nhtsa.gov/ciot or give us a call at 479-855-3771.