Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Kansas to serve as a model to help increase teen seat belt use nationwide

More than half of teen drivers killed in 2012 weren't wearing seat belts.  And that number has increased by six percent over the last three years.  To combat this issue, the Governors Highway Safety Association and The Allstate Foundation released a report that reveals 12 states, including Kansas, have effective programs for increasing seat belt usage that can serve as models for other states.

“Crashes are already the leading cause of death for teens, and it is particularly disturbing to see the percentage of unbelted teen drivers and passengers in fatalities continue to rise,” said GHSA Executive Director Jonathan Adkins, who oversaw the development of this latest report. “It is imperative that we find out what works to make teens understand that using a seat belt may save their life and find ways to convince them to buckle up every time they get in the car.”

The report, Getting It to Click: Connecting Teens and Seat Belts, covers programs and initiatives that were identified through a survey of State Highway Safety Offices (SHSOs) conducted by GHSA in January 2014. After reviewing survey responses, an expert panel identified a number of states with strong teen seat belt-related programs that had the potential for replication by other states. These states are: Delaware, Florida, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Texas and Wisconsin.

Expert panel members identified seven elements that effective teen seat belt programs had in common. These include:
• Laws and their enforcement;
• Peer-to-peer efforts;
• Parental participation;
• Community involvement;
• Incorporation of social media;
• Provision of incentives; and
• Resources that would be useful to diverse audiences.

To learn more about seat belt use in Kansas, click here.

No comments:

Post a Comment