TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) – The Ohio highway patrol kicked off their click it or ticket campaign on Monday, and our cameras were there for the action.
FOX Toledo's Jennifer Steck went on a ride along with a state trooper Monday night.
The highway patrol isn't just looking for seat belt violations during the campaign. A simple violation can turn into getting dangerous criminals off the streets.
On the road with Sergeant Nate Henn, no violation is safe. What was supposed to be a simple traffic stop- a white SUV going 19 miles per hour over the posted speed limit- turned into the driver of the vehicle being wanted on multiple arrest warrants, causing him to flee. He was caught and taken to jail.
It's moments like that when the Ohio State Highway Patrol is looking out for during their Click it or Ticket campaign.
"Every now and then I'll stop somebody that says they had a relative that lived because they weren't wearing that and in 10 years of doing this, I've never seen that happen. I've never been to a crash where somebody lived because they weren't wearing their seatbelt, I've seen the opposite many times," says Sergeant Henn.
The holidays are usually the busiest times on Ohio roadways. Sergeant Henn says with other things- such as vacation- on the minds of many drivers, their seatbelt is sometimes forgotten.
To Sergeant Henn, the Click it or Ticket campaign is another chance to crack down on crime and save lives.
"For me at least, when it's somebody that's younger they have their whole lives ahead of them. Something as simple as putting their seatbelts on, they could survive a crash and I've had them where they could have walked away from a crash, literally, if they would have been wearing their seatbelt."
Sergeant Henn has been a trooper for over 10 years, and he has heard plenty of excuses as to why people don't where their seatbelts. The most common, he says, is "I forgot."