MI Click It or Ticket begins

Memorial Day weekend is only a few days away, and with the holiday weekend approaching, police agencies in much of the state are paying extra attention to seat belt use.

The Michigan Click It or Ticket campaign kicked off today.

More than 20 Michigan counties have seat belt enforcement zones for the next two weeks, and the state Office of Highway Safety Planning has a public service announcement on TV statewide.

It deals with ‘buckle-phobia’, a joking reference to a serious safety concern.

“Essentially, all the police agencies in Marquette County will be participating in the enforcement zones,” Michigan State Police Sgt. Kevin Dowling from the Negaunee Post said. “And there will also be some freelance patrols that’ll be mixed in.”

The Michigan State Police say nearly half of all people who die in traffic crashes were not belted in.

Federal grant money pays for the extra seat belt patrols.

“These are funds that are targeted for seat belt enforcement only, so our officers can concentrate on that enforcement,” Sgt. Dowling said. “They’re not out there taking calls for service, answering non-emergency calls.”

Police in Michigan can pull people over for not being buckled up, even if nothing else is wrong.

Seat belt tickets have a $65 fine.

For more about Click It or Ticket and the locations of the enforcement zones, you can click here.