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STATEMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY SLATER ON "BUCKLE UP, AMERICA!" WEEK

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Rodney E. Slater

STATEMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY SLATER ON "BUCKLE UP, AMERICA!" WEEK

U.S. Department of Transportation
May 18, 1998

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, May 18, 1998
Contact: Bill Adams
Tel.: 202-366-5580
DOT 100-98

Safety is President Clinton's highest transportation priority. That’s why, as we begin "Buckle Up, America!" Week, I urge all motorists to always use their seat belts when traveling and to ensure that everyone in the car is properly buckled up, especially children. Safety is everyone's responsibility.

To underscore the importance of placing children in safety seats, beginning today and continuing through the Memorial Day weekend, law enforcement officers throughout the United States will conduct special activities to enforce laws requiring child safety seats . These enforcement activities and efforts by other safety-minded groups during "Buckle Up, America!" Week are part of our comprehensive strategy to increase the use of safety belts and child safety seats and to save lives in traffic crashes.

Unfortunately, 63 percent of the motor vehicle occupants who died in traffic crashes last year were not buckled up. Almost 60 percent of the small children who died in traffic crashes in 1997 were not in safety seats. Unquestionably, the best way to save lives and prevent injuries on the road is for each and every one of us to use a seat belt and put our children in safety seats.

In his inaugural address, President Clinton asked for a new sense of responsibility for a new century. I urge everyone to take the responsibility for safety seriously and join in the effort to increase seat belt use.

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