Battle of the Belt kicks off in Malden - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Battle of the Belt kicks off in Malden

Trooper Clark Parrott spoke to Malden High School students. Trooper Clark Parrott spoke to Malden High School students.

The Missouri Department of Transportation announced the Battle of the Belt challenge in Malden Tuesday morning.

The challenge was announced at the Lincoln Lacy Ford Motor Company, located at 2774 North Douglas in Malden, Mo.

According to MoDOT, the high school seatbelt challenge will include an incentive this year from Ford Driving Skills for Life.

Through a grant provided by the Governors Highway Safety Association, Ford Driving Skills for Life donated $20,000 worth of iTunes cards to be used as rewards for schools that sign up for the challenge.

Battle of the Belt is a statewide educational program where high schools compete against each other to increase seatbelt use, safe lives and reduce injuries.

MoDOT says only 67 percent of teens buckle up, according to a 2011 survey, compared with 79 percent of Missourians and 85 percent of people across the nation. In 2010, 64 Missouri teens were killed in crashes where they were unbuckled.

Malden had one of the lowest seatbelt use rates in a survey of Missouri high schools at just 34 percent.

Speakers included:

  • Leanna Depue - Chair of executive committee for Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety
  • Trooper Clark Parrott - Missouri State Highway Patrol
  • Lieutenant John Davis - City of Cape Girardeau Police Department
  • American Family Insurance representative
  • Charlie Thacker - Lincoln Lacy Ford Motor Company
  • Taylor Rice - Malden High School student

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