Mississippi Highway Patrol urges drivers to wear seat belts over holiday

By: Quintis Jones

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - With spring break now in full swing, law enforcement is urging drivers to buckle and drive safe.

Officer Brent Barfield with the Mississippi Highway Patrol said many people will be traveling on Mississippi highways to their spring break destinations, so everyone should take extra precautions when getting behind the wheel.

He said every passenger in a motor vehicle is required by state law to properly wear a seat belt.

"Just recently, we've had a string of fatalities in district 7, three of which were unrestrained and they were ejected from the vehicle," he said.

Barfield says not only is being restrained the law, it can also save your life.

"Drivers can reduce the risk of a fatal injury by 45% by being restrained in a seat belt."

He said there will also be an increased highway patrol presence due to the increase in traffic volume from spring break celebrations.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for people age 5-34.