State troopers enforce seat belt laws near schools - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

State troopers enforce seat belt laws near schools

By Crystal Price - bio | email

SULPHUR, LA (KPLC) - Louisiana State Police are holding special seat belt checks in the Troop D area this week as part of National Teen Driver Safety Week.

State troopers have been setting up the checkpoints near area schools where they are hoping to raise awareness and reinforce the state seat belt laws.

Police issued a total of 10 citations at Sulphur High School on Wednesday morning.

"We realize that crashes are the number one killer of teens in our country, and also two-thirds of teens who are killed in crashes weren't wearing their seatbelts," said Sgt. James Anderson with Louisiana State Police.

But after their checkpoints police are hoping to break that trend.

"We're not hoping to issue citations because that would mean people aren't wearing their seat belts," said Anderson. "But we are hoping to raise some awareness and get people to wear their seatbelts voluntarily."

Anderson said troopers are also looking for distractions in vehicles in addition to seat belt checks.

"When it comes to teens and driving, distractions are a major problem as well," said Anderson. "We often see them talking on their cell phone or texting as they come in to school. If we find someone doing that we will take enforcement action."

Troopers also handed out T-shirts to students wearing their seat belts as an award for abiding by the law.

Authorities plan to spend the remainder of the week hitting a few more high schools with seat belt checks.

Copyright 2010 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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