KC seat belt ordinance takes effect May 20

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City, Mo., Police Department will begin enforcing the City’s new primary seat belt ordinance on May 20, the first day of the two-week nationwide “Click It or Ticket” campaign.

The ordinance passed the City Council in early April and the department has been conducting a public information campaign since then to make citizens aware of the change.

This week, officers will be handing out informational pamphlets to motorists at major intersections around the city and to those that are stopped for traffic violations.

The new primary ordinance will allow police officers to stop a vehicle solely for lack of seat belt use by the driver or any front-seat passenger. Before, another violation was needed to be able to enforce the secondary ordinance.

The new fine for a seat belt violation is $50.00, up from the previous $10.00.

“This is the perfect time for this new ordinance to go into effect,” said Sgt. Grant Ruark of the Traffic Division. “We believe this will make a significant difference in our ability to raise the seat belt usage rate in our city. Our rate of 79% is well below the national average of 86% and with nearly seven out of ten victims of fatality accidents in a passenger vehicle being unbuckled, something had to be done. We hope that our citizens will buckle up and “Arrive Alive.”

Traffic officers will be conducting overtime enforcement in addition to their regular duties during the “Click It or Ticket” mobilization which ends June 2.

For more information on Missouri seat belt usage, visit www.saveMolives.com

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