OPP remind drivers and passengers to buckle up this long weekend – and always

In 2023, OPP laid close to 10,000 seatbelt charges. Photo by Alexandria Gilliott.

As the Easter long weekend approaches, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) is reminding drivers and passengers that the safest place to be during a collision is in your seat, behind your seatbelt.

According to a release from the OPP, over the weekend, the police force will conduct a seatbelt safety campaign, “hoping to see every driver and passenger buckled up rather than being handed a provincial offence notice for non-compliance with this important law.”

Seatbelts save lives. As we head into the long weekend, I encourage everyone to buckle up to keep themselves and their families safe. The decision to wear a seatbelt can be the difference between life and death.”

– Michael Kerzner, Ontario Solicitor General

In the last full five-year period (2019-2023), the deaths of 296 people on OPP-patrolled roads have been attributed to not wearing a seatbelt, the OPP stated.   

“Attending the scene of a fatal collision is one of the most difficult calls for service that our frontline officers and emergency partners respond to,” said Thomas Carrique, Ontario Provincial Police Commissioner.

“More often than not, if seatbelts had been worn, lives would have been saved. Wearing a seatbelt and ensuring children are properly restrained gives you and your family the best chance of surviving and reducing injuries if you are involved in a collision. Please buckle up.”

According to the release, in 2023, 67 fatalities on OPP-patrolled roads were attributed to seatbelts not being worn, and close to 10,000 seatbelt charges were laid.

“The long weekend is a time to gather with family and friends and celebrate. If you’re travelling this long weekend, it’s important to remember seatbelts save lives. So, buckle up and ensure children are properly secured in the appropriate child car seats, so you and your loved ones get to your destination safely,” expressed Prabmeet Sarkaria, Ontario Minister of Transportation.

Learn more about Ontario’s seatbelt laws for drivers and passengers, and the penalties you can face here: Seatbelt Safety.

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