Operation Click is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that was started as a partnership between the Crystal Lake Police Department, Crystal Lake Park District, Crystal Lake Chamber of Commerce, and High School District 155.
Since 1998, Operation Click has been urging high school age drivers to buckle their seat belts in order to save lives. Since the program's inception, seat belt usage by teen drivers in Crystal Lake has risen form 65% compliance to 95%.
This program has been successful because generous local business owners, service, clubs, and individuals have donated prizes (and funds to purchase prizes) that are awarded to students 'caught' wearing their seat belts.
The program concludes at the end of each school year with a Grand Prize Give-A-Way. Crystal lake Pontiac/GMC has donated a car the last 8 years. Needless to say, incentives like these help encourage students to get in the habit of buckling up and driving safely. For the 2008/2009 school year, we now have numerous car dealers each providing a car as the grand prize.
To be eligible to win major prizes, students must adhere to a signed contract which states they will wear their seat belts at all times, they will not drink and drive, they will not ride in a car with a driver who has consumed alcohol, and they will not be convicted of any traffic related violation. Students who breach the contract are not eligible for large prizes, including the grand prize car.
Who is participating?
All students in the participating Operation Click high schools, who will have a valid driver license by April 1, 2009 are eligible to participate in Operation Click 2008-2009.
Where does the support come from?
The community provides incentives to Operation Click in the form of cash donations, prize contributions, and in-kind donations. The local police department provides guidance and safety programs throughout the year. Program administrators, promote Operation Click through assemblies, driver education classes, posting survey results, and giving prizes to students that wear their seat belts in random traffic stops.
Operation Click does not focus only on safety belts.
With the generous support of four local Crystal Lake businesses, Operation Click has developed a new program aimed at combating teenage drinking and driving.
C.A.R.T.S. (Community Alcohol Resistance for Teens and Students) is a program that uses a hands-on approach to educate teen drivers about the perils of drinking and driving. Using specially equipped golf carts, students wear Fatal Vision goggle and drive a closed course to test their judgment, ability, reflexes, and instinct. Fatal Vision goggles are worn to simulate the effects of alcohol on eyesight and perception and range in strength from imitating the legal blood alcohol limit to three times that limit.
C.A.R.T.S. is being integrated into the participating schools driver's education curriculum as well as other school functions and special events. The carts, goggles, and course are also available for community functions.
Chicago Tribune Special Report:
2006: A drivers license is an American right of passage, a doorway to greater freedom and adulthood. But for dozens of Chicago area teenagers each year, it is a journey that ends in death... Click here for more information...
What are the goals of Operation Click?
#1 Save teen lives.
#2 Encourage teenagers to form lifelong good driving habits.
Youth between the ages of 15 - 20 comprise only 5% of the driving population yet they are involved in 14% of all fatal crashes.
Drivers between the ages of 16 - 17 are 6 times more likely to be involved in a crash than ALL other drivers combined.
Mission Statement - Operation Click strives to encourage high school students to make a personal decision to wear their safety belts. This is accomplished through positive reinforcement, and prize giveaways. Operation Click has successfully raised the seat belt compliance rate among students from 65% to 95%, reducing the number of severe injuries during motor vehicle crashes and saving lives.