HENRICO, Va. (WTVR) - Henrico Lieutenant A.J. Gordon said motorists who refuse to wear their seat belts should beware.
That's because the 2012 national "Click It or Ticket" seat belt enforcement mobilization kicks off on Monday, May 21.
It's an effort to save lives by cracking down on those who don't buckle up. And occupant protection means both seat belt and child restraint violations.
Virginia law states that any person under the age of 8 years old must be in an approved child restraint device. It further states that any person under the age of 18 years old but at least 8 years old, no matter where they are seated in the vehicle, must properly wear a seat belt.
The driver of the vehicle is responsible for verifying seat belt compliance -- and if found not to be in compliance -- the driver will receive a summons those not properly buckled under 18 years old.
Regular seat belt use saves thousands of lives across Virginia and the nation each year.
In fact, statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that in 2010 alone, seat belts saved an estimated 272 lives in Virginia. An additional 112 lives could be saved with 100% seat belt use.
While this year's "Click It or Ticket" enforcement mobilization runs from May 21 through June 3, motorist should know that officers are out enforcing traffic laws, including occupant protection laws year-round.
Henrico officers are prepared to issue a summons to anyone who is violating the law, especially occupant protection laws.
They say drivers will get no warning -- and that there are no excuses for folks not to buckle up, every time, day and night.