KENNEWICK, Wash. -- The results from the latest round of nighttime seatbelt patrols are in. In Benton and Franklin Counties, police handed out 43 seatbelt citations for the emphasis that ran from late October and into early November.
Washington State Patrol doled out 114 seat belt tickets. Troopers in our area say they believe the emphasis keeps many people safe.
Sgt. Zach Elmore says, "The most rewarding [part is] when we go to collisions at night and people aren't seriously hurt and they are alive because they were wearing their seatbelt and they probably did learn on their own, but we like to think we had some part in it."
The death rate after seven at night is four times higher than during the day. Troopers say along with seatbelt violators, the nighttime emphasis patrols help find drunk drivers, people with drugs and those with suspended licenses.
These people might not otherwise have been caught.