Police Chief Mikel Golden Warns: Strict Seatbelt Enforcement to Save Lives

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McPherson, KS – Beginning October 26, through October 30, the McPherson KS Police Department will join other Kansas law enforcement agencies in the Ticket or Treat traffic enforcement campaign to stop what has been likened to an epidemic in Kansas. In 2019, 8 children ages 0-13 lost their lives due to car crashes in Kansas. Sadly, 62% of those children were not wearing their seat belts.

“In the health field, they talk about making sure children have received their immunizations to prevent deadly diseases,” said Police Chief Golden. “But what many parents don’t think about is that wearing a seatbelt properly is the best prevention of serious injury or death in a vehicle.”

According to the 2019 Kansas observational seatbelt survey, children are much more likely to be buckled up if the driver is wearing their seatbelt. If the driver is buckled, about 97% of the children are restrained. If the driver is not buckled, only about 30% of the observed children were buckled. We want adults to model good driving behaviors for children. Starting on October 26, through October 30, law enforcement across Kansas will be extra-vigilant when patrolling around schools. For more than 20 years, officers have educated and warned drivers and passengers regarding the importance of using seatbelts while in their vehicle.

There should be no surprises when it comes to this enforcement effort. Officers will issue citations to anyone who does not obey Kansas law. Police Chief Golden says, “Even one close call with a child, injury of child, or death of a child is unacceptable. Please slow down, especially in school zones, eliminate the distractions, and always buckle up.” For the latest data and to see more about Kansas safety belt laws, go to: www.ktsro.org

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