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Buckle up or pay the Price

Operation Click it or Ticket in area

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POSTED: May 21, 2010 1:19 p.m.
Photo by Patty Leon/

Georgia State Patrol Troopers Harry Middleton and Sgt. Bruce DeLoach, Powell Harrelson from the Governor's Office of Highway Safety, Cpl. Les Patton of the Hinesville Police Department, LCSD Chief Deputy Keith Moran, Capt. Luther Hires from the Governor's Office of Highway Safety, LCSD Capt. David Edwards and Hinesville Traffic Accident Investigator Lt. Max McLendon will be enforcing the "Click it or Ticket" law.

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With the school year coming to an end, Memorial Day weekend approaching and summer festivities about to kick into high gear, officials at the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety say they want people to be safe in their travels.
Starting this week, the office will have authorities out in full force as part of the GOHS’s “Click it or Ticket” safety initiative, which runs until June 6.
“Georgia is buckle-up country,” said Capt. Luther Hires, coordinator and coastal area traffic enforcement network officer for the Office of Highway Safety.
The Liberty County Sheriff’s Office, Georgia State Patrol and the Hinesville Police Department are targeting motorists who aren’t belted in, especially on rural roads.
“Fifty percent of Georgia’s traffic accident fatalities happen in our rural roads,” Hires said.
According to a press release from the Georgia Office of Highway Safety, only a quarter of the nation’s population lives in rural areas but the number of deadly crashes on country roads accounts for more than half of all traffic fatalities.
“It’s always a pleasure to be a member of some of these proactive activities to try and save lives, LCSO Chief Deputy Keith Moran said. “This is a co-op to get out there and basically prevent people from getting hurt.”
Moran confirmed that most of the county’s recent traffic fatalities have occurred in rural areas. He said more than half were due to improper use of seat belts or not wearing them at all.
“We will be conducting road checks,” said Sgt. Bruce DeLoach, assistant post commander of GSP Post 11 in Hinesville. “We will check people’s licenses and check for their seat belts and child restraints, making sure the seat belts as well as the child seats are properly installed.”
He said they will patrol McIntosh, Liberty and Long counties.
Violators will pay the price.
“We will issue no warnings. They will strictly be citations,” Hinesville Traffic Accident Investigator Lt. Max McLendon warned.
McLendon said the campaign is a good opportunity for people in pickups to get used to the new law, which requires them to buckle up as well.
According to statistics released by the GOHS, 79 percent of Georgia pickup occupants killed in traffic crashes were unrestrained at the time of the crash.
Georgia was the last state to exempt pickup drivers from the seat-belt law until the Georgia Legislature voted 132-29 in April to pass new legislation.
For more information, go to www.georgiahighwaysafety.org.
 

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