Local law enforcement agencies took part in the Special Traffic Enforcement Program or (STEP) in which there were more officers scheduled to work and there were more patrols on the roadways.
In Buffalo Center, Police Chief Matt Holmquist undertook a special project where he observed how many motorists were using their seat belts during that time frame which was over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. According to Holmquist, he observed that 96 out of 121 motorists were using their seat belts at the beginning. That 79% ratio jumped to 88% when observed 105 out of 119 using seat belts at the end of the enforcement period.
Other law enforcement agencies we contacted also noticed an increase in motorists buckling up although in many cases they could not give exact percentage increases like the 9% jump Holmquist observed.
Police and sheriffs offices will once again step up patrols during the Christmas and New Years holidays. Overall, in the state, fatalities are lower this year than in years past and many law enforcement agencies attribute that to heavier and stricter enforcement.