We have a love affair in this state with our pickup trucks – one in every four vehicles is a pickup! Texans know their pickup trucks rock, but they also need to know that they roll! Because pickup trucks are larger than cars, drivers tend to feel safer in their pickup than in a passenger car. But pickup trucks are twice as likely to roll as passenger cars. And, according to a 2011 study conducted by the Texas Transportation Institute, only 80 percent of pickup truck drivers buckle up. Compare that to the more than 90 percent of passengers in all other types of vehicles who regularly put on their seat belts.
Unfortunately, half all those killed in pickup truck crashes were found to be unbuckled. That’s why this year’s Click It or Ticket campaign is focusing on getting pickup truck drivers and passengers to buckle up. Pickup truck drivers and passengers also tend to be young males ages 18-34. This group does not seem to get the message that seat belts save lives.
This year will mark the 11th anniversary of the Ticket or Click Campaign. Over the years, campaign efforts have saved an estimated 2,843 lives in Texas and prevented more than 48,000 serious injuries resulting from car crashes.
Click It or Ticket is a two-week-long program that coincides with Memorial Day weekend. The message is designed to emphasize that wearing a seat belt is not only cost-saving, but life-saving.
From May 21 to June 3, extra law enforcement will be on the roads enforcing the seat belt and child restraint laws. Seat belts are required for both front and back passengers. Children under eight years old, unless taller than 4’9”, must ride in child safety restraints. Fines for noncompliance can range from $25 to $250.
Texas AgriLife Extension Agent Andrea Becker reminds motorists that buckling up can save you money and, more importantly, save your life!