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Rangers warn travelers to buckle up in park

Theodore Roosevelt National Park rangers are reminding travelers to “Click It or Ticket” this Memorial Day weekend.

Law enforcement will be in both North and South units starting Monday to enforce seatbelt laws. The effort is part of the Click It or Ticket mobilization, a national campaign to make sure travelers are wearing their seatbelts. The campaign runs through June 1.

Memorial Day weekend is expected to be the most traveled in 10 years, according to AAA Travel. Automobile fatalities are also up nationwide for the first time in five years. More than 10,300 people who were killed in motor vehicle accidents were not wearing seatbelts, according to a release.

Chief Ranger Dean Wyckoff said he is concerned about the safety of the public visiting the park, hoping his staff can help bring the numbers down.

“There are too many people dying on the roads, and many of those deaths could have been prevented if people took the simple step of wearing their seatbelt,” Wyckoff said.

He added: “Memorial Day weekend kicks off the summer vacation season and we want to ensure that everyone arrives at their destination safe and sound. If you are not wearing your seatbelt while enjoying your visit at the park, you will be ticketed.”

All front seat occupants must be properly buckled up regardless of age. Officers can issue a ticket through secondary enforcement, meaning officers must have another reason to stop a driver before issuing a ticket.

All occupants younger than 18 must wear a seatbelt regardless the location and children under age 7, are less than 57 inches tall or weigh less than 80 pounds must be in an approved car seat. Those laws are primary enforcement offenses.

For more information on the park visit More information can also be found on the Click It or Ticket campaign by visiting

April Baumgarten
April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, as the news editor. She works with a team of talented journalists and editors, who strive to give the Grand Forks area the quality news readers deserve to know. Baumgarten grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family continues to raise registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college,  she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as the Dickinson city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.