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Two Campaigns. One Message. Buckle Up!

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Captain Spaulding speaking at a news conference in Jacksonville.
Captain Gene Spaulding speaks at a news conference in Jacksonville.

Members of Troop A at <em>Click It or Ticket</em> event.
Members of Troop A attend Click It or Ticket event in Bay County.

Recently, the Florida Highway Patrol participated in two safety campaigns that focus on saving lives and preventing injuries. During the Memorial Day holiday period, the preliminary report shows 37 people were killed and 60% of those killed in vehicles normally equipped with safety belts were unrestrained. Several FHP troop leaders attended and spoke at media events to get the message out. One campaign, Click It or Ticket stressed the importance of buckling up. The new Buckle Up in Your Truck campaign focused on a specific target audience.

Captain Spaulding and Trooper Roger Thomas signing a wrecked vehicle that is traveling the state in support of the Buckle Up in Your Truck program.
Captain Spaulding and Trooper Roger Thomas sign a wrecked vehicle that is traveling the state in support of the Buckle Up in Your Truck program.

Major Randy Brown signs a wrecked vehicle in support of the <em>Click It or Ticket</em> program.
Major Randy Brown signs a wrecked vehicle that is traveling the state in support of the Click It or Ticket program.

Troop A's Major Randy Brown participated in two Media events to help kick off Buckle Up Florida's Seatbelt Campaigns in the Panhandle. The first was held at the Pensacola Police station to support Buckle Up in Your Truck which focuses on unrestrained drivers and passengers in pickup trucks. The second event took place at the Bay County Sheriff's Office in Lynn Haven. Major Brown spoke about the importance of wearing seatbelts to reduce injuries and fatalities in crashes. He also stressed the Patrol's commitment to the enforcement of the new primary seatbelt law for motorists under age 18 and our agency's continued efforts to improve public safety in the Panhandle.

Troop E's Captain Jimmy Picanol, Miami District 3, spoke at a local press conference to publicize the Memorial Day Click It or Ticket enforcement effort. A crashed SUV with extensive damage was on display to drive home the point. The driver was wearing her seatbelt and was not seriously injured.

Vehicle after rollover Adults and child after rollover.

Troop G Commander Major Grady Carrick and Captain Gene Spaulding, Jacksonville's South District Commander, spoke at news conferences about the importance of using safety restraints all the time. Troop G troopers take pride in their enforcement efforts during the statewide Click It or Ticket campaign. Every year, they have led FHP troops in 17 straight seatbelt waves. As the last wave was in progress, three motorists including a baby were buckled up, and as a result were spared serious injury after being involved in a rollover crash in Jacksonville on Interstate 295.

The bottom line is to save lives. With 4th of July coming up this weekend, it is important to practice safe driving. During last year’s holiday, 31 persons were killed in traffic crashes, 55% of those drivers and passengers who were killed in vehicles normally equipped with safety belts were not using them. BUCKLE UP FLORIDA!

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