Last year, 982 people who were not buckled up died in crashes on Texas streets and highways, an increase of 6% from 2017.
Seat belts prevent drivers and passengers from being ejected from a vehicle, which is almost always deadly.
Wearing a seat belt reduces the risk of dying in a crash by 45%. That number jumps to 60% for pickup truck crashes.
Despite these facts, seat belt use among pickup truck drivers and passengers continues to lag behind that of passenger vehicles. There are also fewer Texans buckling up at night (from 6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.), even though that’s when nearly 60% of fatal crashes occur.
With these statistics in mind, Texas law enforcement officers will increase their efforts beginning Monday, May 20, to ticket un-belted drivers and passengers, especially at night, as part of the annual “Click It or Ticket” campaign.
Texas law requires the driver and all passengers in a vehicle to be secured by a seat belt. Unbuckled drivers and passengers, even those in the back seat, face fines and court costs of up to $200.
This year’s “Click It..” campaign features David and Wendy Mills of Spring, who lost their daughter, Kailee, in a crash two years ago. She was involved in a crash moments after she un-buckled her seatbelt to take a “selfie.”
As part of the “Click It or Ticket” campaign this year, TxDOT unveiled a unique sculpture that re-enacts the crash that killed Kailee.
The installation captures a car in mid-air just prior to impact and displays what was happening inside the car before it rolled over. People can look through the windows of the just-airborne sedan to see all the details of this one tragic moment. Nearby, video kiosks will narrate the story.
Arrests made by the Marshall Police Department
- John Lee Willis, 71, of Marshall was arrested on the charges of expired vehicle registration and driving while license invalid on Wednesday.
- Nikishama Lamae Woodkins, 22, of Marshall was arrested on the charges of evading arrest/detention with a vehicle, resisting arrest search/transport, display of fictitious license plate, no valid driver’s license, defective stop lamps and disregarding a red light on Thursday.
- Gwendolyn Monique Woodkins, 20, of Marshall was arrested on the charges of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest search/transport on Thursday.
Incidents reported to the Marshall Police Department
- Assault family violence-non aggravated, 2000 block of Spring Street, Wednesday.
- Resisting arrest, 200 block of Sanford Street, Wednesday.
Arrests made by the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office
- Johnny Maurice Jacobs III, 26, of Nacogdoches was arrested on two charges of criminal nonsupport on Wednesday.
- Erik Reid Lovil, 35, of Carthage was arrested on the charge of display of a fictitious license plate on Wednesday.
- Lindsey Ryan Michalak, 30, of Irving was arrested on the charge of public intoxication on Wednesday.
- Destiny Dawn Morris, 25, of Karnack was arrested on the charges of criminal mischief $2,500 to $30,000 and possession of a controlled substance-penalty group 1 less than 1 gram on Wednesday.
- Terence Dmitri Helton Jr., 29, of Marshall was arrested on the charges of deadly conduct-discharge of a firearm at an individual on Wednesday.
- Benjamin Mendez Jr., 33 of Mineola was arrested on two charges of speeding (exceeding prima facie limit) — 68 mph in a 60 mph zone and 80 mph in a 60 mph zone, and on the charge of failure to appear on Wednesday.
- Joshua James Timmons, 38, of Hallsville was arrested on the charges of unauthorized use of a vehicle and unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon on Wednesday.
- Charlie Leon Willeford III, 37, of Diana was arrested on the charges of burglary of a building (Tarrant County) and forgery of a financial instrument on Wednesday.
Incidents reported to the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office
- Burglary of a habitation, Marshall, Wednesday: Tools, clothes and a PS4 game console reported stolen.
- Assault, Hallsville, Wednesday: Report of juveniles fighting.
- Unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, Marshall, Thursday: Report of a vehicle stolen.