Nearly half of Nebraska persons killed in vehicle crashes not wearing seatbelts

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In Nebraska, more than 91 people have died in traffic accidents this year, with more than 60 percent of them were not wearing a seatbelt.

For some people in Siouxland, buckling up is second nature. It’s a habit they learned throughout their childhood.

For Renee Cross and Casey Zweber, frequent drivers in Siouxland, they were raised with the value of seatbelts in mind.

“It was just the way we were raised. We’ve been taught through our whole school and life I guess,” said Cross.

Penny Wendte, the sergeant of Dakota County Sheriff’s office, reminds the public that wearing your seatbelt is a quick decision that can mean the difference between life or death.

“You have a 45 percent or greater chance of surviving an accident with a seatbelt on in a regular passenger car. In Nebraska, it’s a secondary offense which means that we would have to pull the person over for a primary offense first and then the seat belt would come secondary,” said Wendte.

If the law isn’t enough incentive, many vehicles are now equipt with new technology to remind people to buckle up. Alex Baker, a Ford Service Advisor, described some of the latest technologies.

“Some of the newer vehicles, they have a mickey mode. You can set it to where it can actually mute your radio and you will not be able to hear that radio until you actually buckle up your seat belt,” said Baker.

As technology improves and seatbelt reminders become more advanced, law enforcement officers hope it will remind more people to learn to consistently buckle up.

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