APSU police join statewide seat belt program
CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Austin Peay State University’s Campus Police Department is partnering with the Tennessee Highway Safety Office (THSO) for its fifth annual Seatbelts Are for Everyone (SAFE) campaign. This statewide initiative is designed to increase seatbelt and child passenger safety restraint usage through the implementation of occupant-protection programs, public events and checkpoints throughout Tennessee. The SAFE campaign began Feb. 1, 2018 and concludes Aug. 1, 2018.
Austin Peay’s police department is committed to educating students, faculty, staff and visitors about traffic safety, according to APSU Police Sgt. Derrick Oliver and Officer Charyl Ramsey.
“The safety of our community is our number one priority,” Oliver said. “So, when you get behind the wheel, make sure that you buckle up for safety and ensure that your passengers are secured in their seatbelts.”
“Austin Peay State University’s police ask that you please wear your seatbelts during our S.A.F.E. campaign, and each and every time you get behind the wheel, because we value your life — seatbelts save lives,” Ramsey said.
This year will be the fifth time the THSO has sponsored the SAFE campaign. Last year yielded the following results:
- 1,480 child restraint violations
- 16,571 seat belt citations
- 835 other seat belt enforcement activities
“In 2016, Tennessee’s average seatbelt usage rate was 88.95 percent,” Vic Donoho, THSO director, said. “Last year, the state’s usage rate decreased to 88.51 percent. Our goal this year is to achieve 100 percent seatbelt usage across Tennessee through the SAFE campaign and other occupant-protection initiatives.”
In Tennessee, a disproportionate percentage of unrestrained fatalities tend to occur between the hours of 6 p.m. and 5:59 a.m. Historically, approximately fifty percent of Tennessee’s traffic fatalities are unbelted. That percentage increases to nearly sixty when nighttime crashes are examined. Therefore, participating agencies will focus special attention toward nighttime seatbelt enforcement during the SAFE campaign this year.
For more information about the THSO, visit www.tntrafficsafety.org.