|Benton Police Department Conducts Four Hour Seatbelt Initiative|
|Thursday, 21 April 2011 09:00|
Officers with the Benton Police Department recently took part in a seatbelt initiative in an attempt to save lives. Officers monitored the intersection of Military Rd. at the Post Office to find individuals who were not wearing their seatbelts. This event took place on 4/20/11 between 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM.
Those who were identified as not wearing their seatbelt were given citations for the offense. There were 105 citations issued for not wearing a seatbelt during this event. If officers spotted somebody that was wearing their seatbelt they were given a piece of candy as a thank you for buckling up. There were also two warrants served (one misdemeanor and one felony), one Driving on Suspended License charge, and one citation for No Proof of Liability Insurance.
Officers were working this initiative as part of a STEP (Selective Traffic Enforcement Program) grant the Benton Police Department has through the AR State Highway Office.
In 2008, seat belts saved more than 13,000 lives nationwide. From 2004 to 2008, seat belts saved over 75,000 lives — enough people to fill a large sports arena. A common excuse often given for not wearing a seatbelt are people not wanting to be trapped in their vehicle in case of a fire or being in deep water after a crash. Less than ½% of 1% of people involved in crashes are trapped inside their vehicle as a result of wearing their seatbelt.
Arkansas’ seat belt usage rate was 74.4% in 2009, but the usage rate in Benton during the same year was only 64%. For comparison, the national seatbelt usage rate is 83% as of 2009. Between 2004 and 2008 654 people lost their lives in Arkansas due to not wearing a seatbelt. The overall goal of this project is to reduce the number of traffic-related injuries and deaths that result from not wearing a seatbelt, and to increase the seatbelt usage rate.
|Last Updated on Friday, 22 April 2011 09:47|