Patrol reminds motorists that safety belts save lives

The Ohio State Highway Patrol encourages all motorists to buckle-up this upcoming holiday season and continue to do so throughout the New Year. In Ohio from 2014-2016, a total of 1,141 people were killed in crashes who were not wearing an available safety belt.

“It’s simple – safety belts save lives and reduce injury in crashes,” said Lt. Bob Ashenfelter, commander of the Defiance Post. “It is the easiest thing you can do to protect yourself, your family and friends.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates 409 lives were saved in Ohio and 14,668 were saved nationwide in 2016 as a direct result of motorists buckling up. Using a safety belt remains the single most effective thing you can do to protect yourself in a crash.

According to Ohio’s 2016 Observational Seatbelt Survey, over 83 percent of motorists were found to be in compliance with Ohio’s safety belt law. This is nearly identical to the 2015 rate. While these rates appear high, far too many Ohioans still do not buckle up.

Ohio’s safety belt law remains a secondary violation, however troopers continue zero tolerance enforcement when motorists are stopped for other violations and are found to not be wearing their belt. Last year, 114,165 people were convicted of driving or riding in a passenger vehicle without wearing a safety belt.

Troopers ask that you wear your safety belt every time and insist that those who travel with you buckle up as well. For a complete statistical analysis of safety belt violations please visit:

The public is encouraged to call #677 to report impaired drivers and drug activity.