Historically, Thanksgiving is the busiest travel time of the year, putting more people on the road and increasing the likelihood of crashes. In 2013, in the United States, more than 300 people were killed in crashes on Thanksgiving weekend alone.

As a result, during the Thanksgiving weekend (Nov. 27 through Dec. 2), the Forest Park Police Department is joining the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), the Illinois State Police and local law enforcement agencies across the state in a “Click It or Ticket” effort to enforce seat belt and impaired driving laws.

“Nearly half the drivers and passengers being killed in crashes are not wearing seat belts. That’s a major problem,” said Chief Tom Aftanas.

“By law in Illinois, everyone must wear a seat belt no matter if you are a driver or a passenger. Our officers are prepared to ticket anyone who is not wearing a seat belt and arrest those choosing to drive impaired.”

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), seat belts saved the lives of more than 12,500 passenger vehicle occupants age 5 and older nationwide in 2013.

Submitted by the Forest Park Police Department.