Release Date: March 25, 2013
BUFFALO, N.Y. – University at Buffalo Police will pay close attention to seat belt compliance on campus this spring, patrolling campus roadways and setting up checkpoints during peak traffic times.
Taking advantage of grants from Buckle Up New York and the Selective Traffic Enforcement Program, UB Police began stepped-up seat belt enforcement in mid-March that will conclude in early May, according to Lt. Scott Bixby.
Police also will try to curtail dangerous and distracted driving, focusing on cellphone use and texting while driving.
“When speaking with drivers on campus who aren't wearing their seatbelts, officers often hear excuses like, ‘I'm only driving from the dorms’ or ‘I'm just switching parking lots for my next class,’” says Bixby.
“University Police want all drivers on campus to wear their seat belts whenever their car is in motion. As the spring semester winds down, you'll see officers actively enforcing New York State seat belt laws on campus. Please be safe and remember, click it or ticket."
Bixby explains the increased enforcement will include seat belt checkpoints on Augspurger Road at Hadley Road and on Flint Road at Maple Road during peak traffic times. Officers dressed in plain clothes also will visually survey campus roadways during peak traffic times.
Traffic accidents on campus are not uncommon, police say, so motorists should take the same precautions they do on highways, especially the use of seat belts.
Enforcement to reduce distracted driving will be similar to efforts to enforce seat belt compliance. Officers will conduct pre-enforcement visual surveys of cellphone/texting while driving. They also will conduct surveys to measure effectiveness of the enforcement activities. Bixby said the texting and cellphone enforcement activity will take place at Augspurger and Hadley roads during peak traffic times.
"Technology is great,” Bixby says. “But using your mobile device while driving is dangerous for you and the other motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians using campus roadways. This spring, University Police will be seeking to reduce accidents and injuries by enforcing New York State laws prohibiting the use of mobile devices while driving.
“Please, if you need to make a call or send a message, proceed to a safe location and stop your vehicle."
University police will be checking for cellphone use and texting during the last four weeks of the academic year from early April to early May. The program will continue during the first four weeks of the 2013-14 academic year in September.