COLORADO — Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) released their 2022 Seatbelt Study and said the results show improvement but that Colorado is behind on the national rate.

CDOT said that Colorado had seen seatbelt usage increase from 86.6% to 87% this however falls below the national rate of 90%.

Weld, Fremont, Chaffee, and Pueblo Counties were in the bottom four with Pueblo County having a rate of 67.6%. The top four counties were Grand, Garfield, Arapahoe, and Denver.

This year, CDOT partnered with the Colorado State Patrol and local law enforcement agencies for three Click It or Ticket enforcement periods, citing 2,735 drivers for improper restraint use. The most recent Click It or Ticket enforcement from July 25 to Aug. 5 saw 788 drivers cited for improper restraint use, including 38 drivers who had an improperly restrained child under the age of 15 in their vehicle.

“When you’re operating a vehicle, you must ensure that everyone, including yourself, is wearing a seat belt,” said Darrell Lingk, Director of the Highway Safety Office at CDOT. “Seat belt enforcement periods are a reminder that wearing a seat belt minimizes your chances of death or serious injury in a car crash. You don’t want to become a human projectile.”

According to CDOT, there have been 146 unbuckled fatalities on Colorado roads since the start of 2022.

To read the report and learn more about seatbelt laws in Colorado, go to CDOT’s website.