State Patrol goal is to increase local seat belt usage

The Nebraska State Patrol (NSP) Troop E Headquarters in Scottsbluff will continue to focus efforts on saving lives with a special enforcement planned for January and February emphasizing increased seat belt usage in Scotts Bluff County.

In 2012, the NSP Troop E Headquarters- Scottsbluff conducted 12 seat belt surveys at various locations in the Scottsbluff-Gering area. The survey results showed restraint usage to be at 50%, below the state average of 79% seat belt compliance.

The special enforcement the first two months of this year will be conducted during the evening hours in Scotts Bluff County. Statistics show during the past three years approximately 70% of the non-restrained fatalities in Scotts Bluff County have taken place after 4:00 p.m.

Troop E Commander Captain Mike Gaudreault says "Too many times someone is killed, or seriously injured in a crash, because they weren't buckled-up and our troopers will use enforcement and education to draw attention to the critical role seat belts play in saving lives."

An $11,000 grant from the Nebraska Office of Highway Safety (NOHS) will help to pay for the special enforcement effort.

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