Oct. 26, through 30 the McPherson Police Department will join other Kansas law enforcement agencies in the "Ticket or Treat" traffic enforcement campaign.


In 2019, 8 children ages 0-13 lost their lives due to car crashes in Kansas. Of those, 62% were not wearing their seat belts.


"In the health field, they talk about making sure children have received their immunizations to prevent deadly diseases," said Police Chief Golden. "But what many parents don’t think about is that wearing a seatbelt properly is the best prevention of serious injury or death in a vehicle."


According to the 2019 Kansas observational seatbelt survey, children are much more likely to be buckled up if the driver is wearing their seatbelt. If the driver is buckled, about 97% of the children are restrained. If the driver is not buckled, only about 30% of the observed children were buckled.


"We want adults to model good driving behaviors for children," Golden said.


Oct. 26,through 30 law enforcement across Kansas will be extra-vigilant when patrolling around schools. For more than 20 years, officers have educated and warned drivers and passengers regarding the importance of using seatbelts while in their vehicle.


Officers will issue citations to anyone who does not obey Kansas law.


"Even one close call with a child, injury of child, or death of a child is unacceptable. Please slow down, especially in school zones, eliminate the distractions, and always buckle up," Golden said.


According to the Kansas Highway Patrol, Kansas law requires children under age 4 to be correctly secured in an approved child safety seat. Children ages 4-7 must be secured in an approved booster seat unless taller than 4-foot-9 or heavier than 80 pounds. Children ages 8-13 must wear their seat belt.Violations of the Child Passenger Safety Act is a $60 fine, plus court costs.


The campaign is supported by a Kansas Department of Transportation grant and includes other law enforcement agencies.


For the latest data and to see more about Kansas safety belt laws, go to: www.ktsro.org