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The Great Seat Belt Crackdown Of 2011: CHP's $142-$445 Memorial Day Weekend Special!

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More than140 local law enforcement agencies and the CHP are on high seat belt alert with a statewide, zero tolerance, "Click It or Ticket" Memorial Day weekend crack down that begins today, notes an LASD news release.

For adults, the fine for not wearing a seatbelt is $142. For a child younger than 16, the fine jumps to $445 for first time offenders. Enforcement of this year’s "Click It or Ticket" mobilization is scheduled from May 23 to June 5.

California’s current rate of seat belt use is at 96.2%, an all-time high, however that still means nearly one million people are "not buckling up."

Notes LASD:

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Properly restrained drivers, passengers and children have a 50 percent better chance of surviving a crash than unbelted occupants. Those ejected from vehicles in crashes or roll-overs are up to 35 times more likely to die than restrained occupants. In 2009 alone, seat belts saved approximately 12,713 lives nationwide. In California, it is estimated that 320 people who were killed in 2009 would be alive today if they had been wearing seat belts.