Click it or ticket.
For years, those words have been synonymous with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s campaign designed to increase the use of seat belts. The message is simple: If you’re pulled over while driving and don’t have your seat belt on, you will be cited.
In the past five years alone, the annual two-week “Click It or Ticket” crackdown has resulted in more than 3 million seat belt citations nationwide. As the NHTSA explains, that’s a ticket every other second.
The message is even more important now that driving without wearing a seat belt is a primary offense in West Virginia.
The new law, which took effect Tuesday, ultimately will help keep people safe. West Virginia joins 32 other states that make seat belts a primary-offense law, which means police officers won’t need to detect any other moving violation to issue a ticket for non-compliance with the seat belt law.
It also comes on the heels of another new law designed to curb distracted driving. That law — prohibiting the use of any handheld devices while driving in West Virginia — took effect last week, one year after texting behind the wheel became a primary offense in the state.
Buckle up. No talking on your cellphone. No texting.
These three laws can go a long way in keeping countless West Virginia drivers safe every day.
And let’s face it — clicking a seat belt into place should be one of the first things drivers do when they get behind the wheel. Just as important as adjusting mirrors and tucking away your cellphone, wearing seat belts is a vital step toward keeping drivers safe.
That’s not just our opinion. The National Safety Council reports that seat belts saved more than 75,000 lives from 2004 to 2008.
Sadly, even though seat belt use averages 88 percent nationally, there are still groups less likely to wear seat belts: teens, commercial drivers, males in rural areas, pickup truck drivers, people driving at night and people who have been drinking.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says adult seat belt use is the most effective way to save lives, and seat belts reduce serious crash-related injuries and deaths by about 50 percent.
What’s especially troubling is that the CDC says adults who live in rural areas are 10 percent less likely to wear seat belts than adults who live in urban and suburban areas. In addition, seat belt use is lower in states with secondary enforcement seat belt laws or no seat belt laws compared to states with primary enforcement laws.
Wearing seat belts is an effective — and simple — way to save lives. And now that you can be cited for not wearing a seat belt while driving, the extra second or two it takes to click it into place when you get behind the wheel could save you a few extra bucks as well.
Click it or ticket.
Prevention must remain focus when dealing with cruel black lung disease
“Preventable, but not curable.”
That’s how Joe Main, assistant secretary of labor for Mine Safety and Health, describes black lung disease.
He could also use the word “deadly.”
According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, black lung has killed more than 76,000 miners since 1968.
If something seems too good to be true, then assume that it is
Scam. noun. A confidence game or other fraudulent scheme, especially for making a quick profit; swindle.
This is a word that Marion Countians have heard a lot about in the past few years. And the problem appears to be one that is getting worse every day.
State must convince parents, schools about benefits of Common Core
It’s always nice to have a little bit of background information before diving into something new.
So we have to agree with West Virginia Board of Education president Gayle Manchin when she says the state should have done a better job of explaining Common Core standards when they were first introduced.
Those standards, part of a national educational initiative that sets learning goals designed to prepare students in kindergarten through 12th grade for college and career, will be fully implemented in every West Virginia school district next month.
Time is now for Tomblin to support King Coal Highway
U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., is asking Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to add the King Coal Highway project to West Virginia’s six-year highway improvement plan. It is a logical request, and one that Tomblin should act promptly on.
United effort to keep NASA in Fairmont is essential project
The high-technology sector is obviously vital to the economy of North Central West Virginia.
That’s why a strong, united effort to keep the NASA Independent Verification and Validation Program in Fairmont is absolutely essential.
COLUMN: Calling all readers: Be heard
I love to talk to readers.
I love to hear concerns they have about stories we’ve written, things they think should be included in the newspaper and things they think shouldn’t be.
Korean War veterans are deserving of a memorial
NEEDED: A total of $10,000 for the Korean War Memorial this year.
And a good man has been placed in charge of the funding. Charlie Reese, former president of the Marion County Chamber of Commerce, is now director of the Marion County Development Office. His task was to make a recommendation as to what steps are necessary to keep the project moving.
Roll up your sleeves, give blood and you can save lives
It takes up to 100 units of blood to save the life of someone who sustains life-threatening injuries in a vehicle accident.
We’re hoping that the number of people who come to Fairmont Senior High School on Friday for and American Red Cross blood drive will exceed that amount.
Vehicles and motorcycles must share the road safely
The days are long. The weather is superb. There’s plenty of leisure time in these lazy days of summer.
It’s the perfect time to take a long motorcycle ride.
It’s also the perfect opportunity for us to take the time to remind not only riders but drivers of the need to share the road. And we feel compelled to mention it because just within the month of July, there have been two motorcycle-versus-car accidents within the City of Fairmont alone — one with severe injuries sustained by the motorcyclist and the other with less serious injury.
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- Prevention must remain focus when dealing with cruel black lung disease