Governor awards click it, ticket grant

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The Click It or Ticket seat-belt safety campaign is about to ramp up across Alabama around Memorial Day weekend.

Gov. Kay Ivey has awarded a $58,700 grant to help collect and evaluate traffic safety data as part of the effort.

The grant to the University of Alabama’s Center for Advanced Public Safety will fund research and evaluation of seat belt and child restraint use in Alabama, and supplements a $139,796 grant awarded earlier in 2017. Surveys are conducted before and after the enforcement campaign, which will occur May 22 through June 4. Last year’s survey found that 93 percent of Alabamians were wearing their seat belts during the campaign.

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“Not wearing a seat belt is always a critical factor in many highway injuries and deaths,” Ivey said. “The valuable data collected by the Center for Advanced Public Safety each year bears this out, so I strongly urge every Alabamian to buckle up when traveling on our roads and highways.”

The center collects a myriad of traffic safety data and statistics and has been instrumental in developing tools used by law enforcement officers statewide such as electronic citation and crash reporting software.

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grant from funds made available by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

“ADECA’s partnership with the Center for Advanced Public Safety helps collect and analyze valuable traffic-safety data and statistics from all areas of the state,” Former ADECA Director Jim Byard Jr. said. “This information helps identify trends in seat-belt use and alcohol-related and distracted driving crashes and helps law enforcement agencies pinpoint problem areas in their jurisdictions.”

ADECA manages a wide range of programs that support law enforcement, economic development, energy conservation, water resource management and recreation.

Ivey notified Cynthia Hope, the University of Alabama’s director of sponsored programs, that the grant had been approved.