Buckle Up: Click It or Ticket Starts Today in Westfield
Those who fail to buckle up will be subject to a $46 fine.
The Westfield Police Department will be participating in the "Click it or Ticket" campaign to ensure that drivers and passengers are wearing seat belts.
The Town Council passed a resolution at Tuesday evening's meeting in support of the campaign, which will begin today and end June 3.
Councilman Keith Loughlin, vice-chair of the public safety committee, explained that failure to wear a seat belt is considered a primary offense in New Jersey and a motorist can be stopped for this violation alone.
"The "Click it or Ticket" campaign is funded through reimbursable state grants," Loughlin said. "Westfield applies for these grants every year as a way to reduce taxpayer costs associated with running our police department.
"We also regularly apply for and receive state grants for DWI enforcement. Under the leadership of Mayor Andy Skibitsky, we continue to look for ways to reduce the tax burden on Westfield residents while continuing to provide essential services."
Loughlin added that signs will not be posted in town advertising the campaign nor will a mailing be sent to residents.
Westfield Police Chief David Wayman said enforcement strategies may vary. A plainclothes officer may be standing on a corner at a traffic light checking to see if drivers and passengers are seat-belted. If not, he or she will then radio to another officer stationed around the corner. Or, officers may be in uniform in marked patrol cars, Wayman explained.
Loughlin noted under the state's primary seat belt law, all motorists and passengers in the front seat, as well as all passengers under 18, who are not properly restrained in a seat belt or car seat face a $46 fine. This ticket is issued to the driver. Adult passengers who fail to buckle up when riding in the back could be subject to a $46 fine as well.