24 citations issued in Mower County during seat belt enforcement period; Over 4,600 citations issued in state

Published 7:45 am Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Law enforcement across Minnesota reported 4,610 seat belt and 140 child seat citations during the two-week Click It or Ticket enforcement campaign from Sept. 17-29, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Office of Traffic Safety reported.

More than 300 law enforcement agencies, including the Mower County Sheriff’s Office and Austin Police Department, participated in the enforcement period.

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety Office of Traffic Safety coordinated the enhanced enforcement and education efforts and provided federal funds from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for extra patrols.

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According to Austin Police Capt. David McKichan, Mower County deputies and Austin police officers worked a combined total of 44 ½ hours of overtime during the enforcement period. During that time, 100 stops were made.

According to McKichan:

• 15 seat belt citations were issued

• Six speeding citations were issued

• Two revoked or suspended drivers license citations were issued

• One texting while driving citation was issued

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety reported troopers of Minnesota State Patrol District 2400, based in Oakdale, issued 417 citations, the most of any law enforcement agency during the enforcement period. Minnesota State Patrol District 2700, based in Duluth, issued 211 citations, the most in Greater Minnesota.

Minnesota law states drivers and passengers in all seating positions must be buckled up or seated in the correct child safety seat. Officers will stop and ticket unbelted drivers or passengers. Seat belts must be worn correctly — low and snug across the hips, and shoulder straps should never be tucked under an arm or behind the back.

Minnesota law also states all children must be in a child restraint until they are 4 feet 9 inches tall, or at least age 8, whichever comes first.