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“Click” Across Kansas!
Statewide Campaign Encourages Seat Belt Use in Kansas


May 7, 2003 Release 03-058

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Rosalie Thornburgh or Patrice Pomeroy
KDOT Bureau of Traffic Safety
(785) 296-3756

“Click” Across Kansas!
Statewide Campaign Encourages Seat Belt Use in Kansas

Kansas City to Wichita: CLICK.

Garden City to Wichita: CLICK.

Pittsburg to Wichita: CLICK!

The Kansas Department of Transportation intends to buckle up all of Kansas. It’s part of KDOT’s statewide seat belt awareness campaign, “Clicks Across Kansas”, taking place May 19-25 and in conjunction with the national Buckle Up America Week.

“Clicks Across Kansas” is a week-long promotional tour to advance KDOT’s message that seat belts save lives. Three teams of KDOT representatives will depart from the northeast, southeast and southwest corners of the state and travel inward towards Wichita. The routes symbolize seat belt straps as depicted in the logo for Kansas Clicks, KDOT’s seat belt awareness program. The three “Clicks Caravans” will make promotional stops in communities along the way and will symbolically buckle in the state when they meet at the Wichita “buckle.”

“Our intent is to emphasize that Kansas drivers and passengers should always buckle up,” said Rosalie Thornburgh, Chief of KDOT’s Bureau of Traffic Safety. “It’s a fact that seat belts save lives, but only when people make seat belts ‘click.’ ”

A kick-off event will be held at 2 p.m. on Monday, May 19 at the Hawthorne Suites hotel 2405 N. Ridge Rd. in Wichita. Representatives of KDOT and the Kansas Highway Patrol will recognize the beginning of the “Clicks Across Kansas” campaign.

Yellow Transportation Inc also will lend its support to the event— on 18 wheels.

Yellow has modeled several truck trailer designs after KDOT billboards that encourage seat belt usage. One of those trailers will serve as the backdrop for the Clicks Across Kansas event.

“Yellow Transportation Inc places high importance on passenger and highway safety,” said Thornburgh. “KDOT is pleased this Kansas-based company has lent its support to this campaign and to seat belt awareness.”

Wichita is the site of the kick-off event for another reason. The city also is hosting KDOT’s annual Transportation Safety Conference, May 20-21, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.

According to national statistics, Kansas has only a 61 percent seat belt usage rate. That gives Kansas the ninth lowest seat belt compliance rate in the nation for adults.

Observational surveys of Kansas drivers and passengers show seat belt compliance in Kansas is particularly low in rural Kansas (41 percent) and also for drivers and passengers in pick-up trucks (42 percent). KDOT also is concerned about seat belt usage rates for children between the ages of 4 and 14 (52 percent).

“Kansas law requires all children to wear seat belts in both the front and back seats,” said Thornburgh. “We encourage parents to make sure their passengers are buckled in. Better yet, we’d like for parents to set a good example by buckling themselves in too.”

Kansas law requires adult passengers to wear seat belts in the front seat. Children under age four are required to be in an approved and properly installed safety seat.