Through March 5, 2017, Hutchinson Police Department are joining other law enforcement agencies in Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma to stop what has been an epidemic for the past several years – teen deaths due to automobile accidents.
On Monday morning, Feb. 27, officers wrote 10 seat belt violation tickets near Hutchinson High School -- six adults and four students.
In 2015, 13 teens lost their lives due to car crashes in Kansas. Of those deaths, 40 percent of the teens were not properly restrained.
In an effort to change this trend, law enforcement across the tristate area of Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma will be extra vigilant when patrolling around schools. For more than 30 years, officers have educated and warned passengers and drivers regarding the importance of using restraints while in their vehicle.
“There should be no surprises when it comes to this enforcement effort,” said Nic Smith, school resource officer at Hutchinson High School. “Officers will issue citations to any individual who refuses to obey the traffic laws, whether it is for speeding, texting or failing to buckle up.”
Members of SAFE – Seatbelts Are For Everyone – at HHS have created a video about safety belt use and the use of electronic devices while driving. That video can be seen at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89LYdCWIuR0.
SAFE is a teen-run, peer-to-peer program focusing on increasing teen seatbelt use through education, positive rewards and enforcement. The program is designed to bring awareness of the importance of wearing a seatbelt to reduce the number of motor vehicle-related injuries and fatalities within the community.