REPUBLIC, MO - The Republic Police Department will be joining other law enforcement agencies throughout the state of Missouri for an aggressive youth seat belt mobilization between March 15th and March 31st. Our goal is to crack down on youth seat belt violators in Republic and educate motorists on the importance of safety belt use in the statewide effort to reduce roadway fatalities.
The Republic Police Department is passionate about this effort as statistics indicate 30% of Missouri teens do not regularly wear their seat belts while riding in motor vehicles on our roadways. Eight out of ten teen vehicle drivers killed in traffic collisions were unbuckled prior to the crash; that number is staggering, whether you have a teen or not. In known cases where fatally injured teen occupants of vehicles were ejected, 97% were unbuckled prior to the crash. In 2016, male teen driver safety belt usage was only at 66% in Missouri, far below the 90% national average of all drivers using safety belts across the United States.
Under the Graduated Driver’s License (GDL) law, all teens are required to wear a seat belt while in a vehicle on a roadway and a failure to do so is a primary violation which allows police officers to stop them. Parents are the example that teens will follow and without parental reminding, encouragement and enforcement, and you wearing your seat belt, teens will keep riding unbuckled. Whether you are a parent or not, you don’t want any child becoming a statistic.
“There is no more important cause for everyone in Republic to support than ensuring our youth make it to adulthood and become contributing members of our community,” said Republic Police Chief Mike Lawton adding, “Every one of us can contribute and make a difference by taking personal responsibility to ensure that our teen drivers and passengers are always buckled up when out on our roadways.”
Seat belt use is the single most effective way to protect people in vehicles and reduce fatalities in motor vehicle crashes. Will you help us take a stand?
Buckle Up and Arrive Alive. For information on Missouri seat belt usage, visit www.saveMOlives.com.