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This is a guest blog post from the Highway Safety Division (HSD) of the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS).

Seat belts are your best defense in the event of a crash — but Massachusetts has one of the lowest seat belt use rates in the country.

Nationwide, almost 90 percent of people wear their seat belts. In Massachusetts, only 74 percent do.

We need to do better. In May, the Massachusetts State Police and more than 140 local police departments were on the roads for the Click It or Ticket campaign, but you should buckle up every time you get in the car.

Use Your Head. Buckle Up.

The Facts About Seat Belts

This is a life-or-death issue. In 2014, 60 percent of people who died in crashes in Massachusetts weren’t wearing their seat belts, when seat belt use was known.

Men are less likely to wear a seat belt than women, especially young men between 18 and 34. Drivers of pickup trucks and commercial vehicles are the least likely to buckle up. Less than half of commercial drivers do in Massachusetts.

When Should You Wear Your Seat Belt?

Always. Every time you get in your car, you should buckle up — no matter how short your trip.

Why Should You Wear Your Seat Belt?

Wearing your seat belt can save your life. It’s the single best way to protect yourself in a crash. Remember, you can’t control other aggressive, distracted, or impaired drivers on the road. Statistically, you can reduce your risk of injury or death by about half if you buckle up.

Buckling up is the law in Massachusetts. Use your head when you get in the car — wear your seat belt.

If you have questions about seat belt laws in Massachusetts, including child passenger seat belt requirements, tweet us @MassGov or visit HSD’s website.

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