By Alexis Scott Syracuse, N.Y. (NCC NEWS) – Nobody likes to receive a ticket, but for the Syracuse Police Department doing so can lead to saving more lives. Buckle Up New York is a statewide initiative to get drivers to wear their seatbelts at all times to avoid related death and/or injury. The city of Syracuse is continuously trying to crack down on decreasing the number of fatalities by increasing the number of check points and having more educational meetings about the topic.
According to the Syracuse Police Department, they have issued around 6,000 tickets to residents. They said the most car accidents happen around Eerie Boulevard and the Syracuse University area between the hours of 11 p.m. and 4 a.m. Most of these accidents result in injury and because drivers are not properly wearing their seatbelt. Traffic police officer Lonnie Dotson Jr. said this can easily be taken care of with a simple reminder. Their reminder? A ticket. If a driver is caught operating a motor vehicle without the proper belting, instead of the normal warning, he or she will recieve a ticket costing anywhere from $50 and higher depending on additional factors such as speeding or broken tail lights.
Along with making sure that adults have their seatbelt on, this rule also applies to infants and young children. Dotson said the most common mistake for young children in booster seats and car seats is that the guardian might forget to loop the seatbelt through the seats to properly hold the child in place.
He said that some residents have come to him and say they feel that they cannot install it properly, but there’s a resolution to that. Around the city and state, there are safety seat stations that will provide help to parents looking for answers or assistance with their safety gear.
The Syracuse Police Department says it has been able to get the death toll to six, which is down four from last year around this time. SPD attributes that decrease to the Buckle Up New York Initiative. Officer Dotson says the department’s main goal is to educate residents on the importance of how such a small effort can change everything while driving for you and for the others.