Police Remind Drivers to Buckle Up Before Thanksgiving Crashes - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Police Remind Drivers to Buckle Up Before Thanksgiving Crashes

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Kennewick Police want to remind drivers to be safe during one of the busiest travel times of the year. Kennewick Police want to remind drivers to be safe during one of the busiest travel times of the year.

KENNEWICK, WA - Kennewick Police want to remind drivers to be safe during one of the busiest travel times of the year. 

Officers say wearing your seat belt is one of the single most effective ways to save your life and the lives of your loved ones while on the road this Thanksgiving. 

Washington State law requires everyone in a car, driver and passengers, to always where a seat belt. Anyone who chooses to break the law will face a $124 penalty. 

Police say research shows with proper seat belt use, the risk of fatal injury to front seat passengers goes down by 45%, and the risk of moderate to serious injury is cut in half. 

The U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says seat belts saved almost 12,000 lives nationwide back in 2011. That same year, the DOT says more than half of the 21,253 people who died in passenger car crashes were NOT wearing their seat belts at the time. 

Over Thanksgiving weekend back in 2011, nearly 250 people died in car crashes across the country. Half of those people who died were not wearing seat belts. 

On this Thanksgiving weekend, police are asking you to make it a safe holiday by buckling up, and always driving sober.

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