Driving through Ferriday? Wear your seat belt

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 9, 2005

FERRIDAY, La. &045; In a three-hour time span 90 people were caught driving without a seat belt in the Ferriday city limits.

The seat belt checkpoint was just one of many to come from the Ferriday Police Department in an effort to enforce safety rules and the law, Chief Investigator Richard Madison said.

&uot;It’s for their safety, for the safety of kids and the safety of the public,&uot; Madison said. &uot;It’s the law. We are going to enforce the law.&uot;

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A recent increase in seat belt citations is something citizens can expect to continue, Madison said. In mid-May, FPD will take part in a statewide seat belt safety week to promote the importance of car restraints.

But even after the May emphasis, FPD will continue to write citations, he said.

&uot;We are asking for voluntary compliance,&uot; he said. &uot;But there is going to be zero tolerance by this agency on people who fail to buckle up. The bottom line is the safety of the citizens.&uot;

Officers can stop any car in which they see that a driver or passenger is not wearing a seat belt. The department can also conduct roadside checks or ticket drivers for a seat belt violation when they are stopped on other charges.

Madison said he’s heard numerous excuses from drivers who say they are not traveling far enough to need a seat belt, but stressed that an accident can happen at any time.

&uot;For safety’s sake, wear your seatbelt,&uot; he said.

The increase in seat belt violations follows a continued strict enforcement of the speed limits in Ferriday. Many days a week, 20 more speeding citations are issued in Ferriday. Madison has said the speed limits are also being enforced for the safety of the community and the schools within the city limits.