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Long IslandNassau

Counties to begin seat belt enforcement drive

The national Click It or Ticket seat-belt enforcement campaign begins Monday with both Suffolk and Nassau county police departments participating, authorities said.

Nassau County police said in a Friday news release that its department and 16 other city and village departments will be a part of the enforcement program.

A Suffolk police spokeswoman did not have details of the department's program. But, like Nassau, she said it is expected to participate until June 3 to coincide with nationwide awareness effort by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The federal agency said 61 percent of the 10,647 occupants killed in 2010 in motor vehicle crashes overnight (between 6 p.m. and 5:59 a.m.) were not wearing their seat belts, compared with 42 percent during the daytime hours.

The agency's stance is that seat belts save lives, and the enforcement program seeks to crack down on those who don't buckle up.

"Too many drivers and passengers on the road at night are not wearing their seat belts, and it all too often ends in tragedy," Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano said in a news release.

Mangano said that New York State Police, in addition to the 16 village and city police departments in the county, also will be enforcing the Click It or Ticket program.

Other Nassau departments participating in the enforcement program include Centre Island, Floral Park, Freeport, Garden City, Glen Cove, Great Neck Estates, Hempstead, Kensington, Lake Success, Long Beach, Lynbrook, Malverne, Old Westbury, Oyster Bay Cove, Port Washington and Rockville Centre.

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