DerryNews.com, Derry, New Hampshire

Derry

March 27, 2014

Councilors OK police seat belt grant support

DERRY — Derry police hope to use state grant money to perform seat belt enforcement patrols this spring.

Town councilors gave the OK for police to apply for a N.H. Highway Safety Agency grant to support a spring seat belt enforcement initiative.

The $2,574 would give officers the opportunity to conduct specialized patrols between May 12 and 26 of this year to make sure younger drivers are using seat belts.

Police Capt. Vern Thomas told councilors the department will participate in the state campaign “Join the New Hampshire Clique” to keep drivers safe, especially those under the age of 18.

Children under age 18 must wear seat belts in the Granite State.

He said Derry has participated in this type of patrol for about 15 years.

“It gives us the opportunity to send out six officers for six-hour patrols,” he said.

Thomas said officers would patrol from one stationary location, usually at the Hood Commons parking lot area, to scan drivers and see whether they are wearing seat belts.

“We stay in one spot and do the best enforcement we can,” he said.

He said thousands of cars would be scanned during the time frame. Warnings would be issued to young drivers not wearing their belts. Other communities also participate in the state program.

Councilor Tom Cardon said it was a great idea.

“I’m alive because I wore my seat belt a couple of years ago,” he said.

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