City of Red Wing

Buckle Up: Increased Seatbelt Patrols Take to Red Wing Roads This Fall

Thursday, October 3 2013 12:00 AM

Motorists and passengers are reminded to buckle up this fall as extra Click It or Ticket seatbelt patrols take to the roads statewide October 4–19. Red Wing Police Department is among nearly 400 Minnesota agencies increasing patrols to encourage motorists to buckle up.

In the last three years on Minnesota roads (2010-2012), there were 852 motorist traffic deaths, of which 361 (42 percent) were not buckled up. Of those 361 killed, 42 percent were motorists ages 16–29, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Office of Traffic Safety.

In Goodhue County, during 2012, we experienced 649 crashes which resulted in 6 fatalities, 186 injuries and 457 involved property damage only.

 “Every year, teens and young adults represent a large percentage of unbelted traffic deaths, which indicates there is still a major issue with seatbelt usage among that age group,” says Chief Roger Pohlman. “You cannot account for the actions of other drivers; therefore it is vital that vehicle operators take the time to protect themselves and their passengers by buckling up!”  “In 2012, over 56% of crashes contributing factors were:  Driver distraction/inattention; failure to yield; following too close and unsafe/illegal speeds, all activities that put others at risk!”

Drivers, Passengers — Including in the Back Seat — Must Be Belted

In Minnesota, drivers and passengers in all seating positions, including in the back seat, are required to be buckled up or seated in the correct child restraint. Officers will stop and ticket unbelted drivers or passengers. Seat belts must be worn correctly — low and snug across the hips; shoulder straps should never be tucked under an arm or behind the back.

The Importance of Buckling Up

In rollover crashes, unbelted motorists are usually ejected from the vehicle. In most cases, the vehicle will roll over them. Often, unbelted motorists will crack teeth out on steering wheels or break their nose, and even slam into and injure or kill others in the vehicle.

In a crash, odds are six times greater for injury if a motorist is not buckled up.

Minnesota Child Car Seat Law and Steps 

  • Rear-facing infant seats — Newborns to at least 1 year and 20 pounds; recommended up to age 2. It is safest to keep a child rear-facing as long as possible.
  • Forward-facing toddler seats — Age 2 until around age 4. It’s preferable to keep children in a harnessed restraint as long as possible.
  • Booster seats — Use once outgrown a forward-facing harnessed restraint; safest to remain in a booster until 4 feet 9 inches tall, or at least age 8.
  • Seat belts — A child is ready for an adult seat belt when they can sit with their back against the vehicle seat, knees bent comfortably and completely over the vehicle seat edge without slouching, and feet touching the floor. Children 4 feet 9 inches tall or taller can correctly fit in a lap/shoulder belt.



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