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Seat belts, car seats required at Fort Riley

By Julie Fiedler | 1ST INF. DIV. POST | August 14, 2014

• Seemingly routine trips can be deceptively dangerous. Most fatal crashes happen within 25 miles from home and at speeds of less than 40 mph.

• Young men are most at risk. Among passenger vehicle occupants, men ages 18 to 34, who were killed in fatal crashes, 65 percent were not buckled.

• In a crash, everything in your car can cause you harm – your seat belt is one of the few things that can actually save you.

These are just a few seat belt safety facts from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website, www.nhtsa.gov/nhtsa/ciot/stats.html.

“It’s proven that seat belts save lives,” said Lt. Paul Davis, traffic investigations, Fort Riley Police Department, Directorate of Emergency Services. “We just want people to wear their seat belts … In the end, it really helps you.”

In Kansas, including at Fort Riley, drivers and passengers are required to wear seat belts or be in approved safety restraints, like car seats and booster seats for children.

Exceptions for adults include occupants riding in cars without seat belts manufactured prior to 1968, mail carriers actively engaged in delivering mail, newspaper carriers activity engaged in delivery newspapers or occupants with a written statement from a licensed physician indicating they are unable to comply for medical reasons, per Kansas Statute 8-2503.

“Seat belts are design to protect adults,” Davis said, adding car seats and booster seat are specifically designed for children. “Booster seats reduce the risk of injury.”

Children must wear appropriate restraints according to age, height and weight factors, per Kansas Statute 8-1344.

Children, 4 years and younger, must be secured in an approved car seat. Children, 4 to 8 years, weighing less than 80 pounds or shorter than 4 feet, 9 inches must be secured in a booster seat. Children, 8 to 14 years, weighing more than 80 pounds or taller than 4 feet, 9 inches must wear a seat belt.

Those not wearing appropriate seat belts are subject to a fine of $10 for adults, 18 years and older, and $60 for youth, 14 to 17 years. Drivers are responsible for children, 14 years or younger, traveling in their vehicles and can incur a $60 fine for infractions.

“Our goal is not to write tickets and hinder people’s freedom of movement on the road. We’re doing it for the safety of the Soldiers, civilians and family members on Fort Riley. That’s the focus,” said Sgt. Stephen Grappe, 73rd Military Police Detachment, 97th Military Police Battalion.

“We don’t want people to think we’re out to get them,” Davis added. “We’re just trying to make it safe for everyone out there.”

DES personnel will conduct seat belt checks in designated lanes on post to help raise awareness of seat belt safety in the community, and ensure drivers and passengers are in compliance with local regulations.
Tag Family   Tag Traffic Safety