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Buckle up! Montana Highway Patrol joins campaign to encourage seat belt safety

Posted at 8:41 PM, May 21, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-01 10:25:31-04

BOZEMAN – A nationwide seat belt safety campaign called Border to Border kicked off Monday, with Montana Highway Patrol taking part.

MHP partnered with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for B2B, which began at 4 p.m. Monday and ends at 8 p.m. Monday night.

The B2B program increases law enforcement presence in areas of high traffic, like I-90 and Highway 287, encouraging drivers to buckle up.

Locally, MHP will have about 10 to 15 additional troopers on staff, and anyone pulled over who is not wearing a seat belt will be issued a citation.

"Most of our crashes occur within one to five miles of home,” said MHP Sgt. Patrick McLaughlin. “Just getting in the car and going to the gas station, getting in the car to go to the grocery store is usually within that range, so it’s really important to make sure you have your seat belt on every time you get into the car, whether you’re backing out or you’re going across country,” he said.

According to the NHTSA, 48 percent of the drivers killed in vehicle crashes in 2016 were not wearing a seat belt.

The Border to Border campaign comes ahead of national Click it or Ticket Week, which runs through June 3.