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Fewer Utahns buckling up

Fewer Utahns buckling up



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More Americans are buckling up, but the numbers are not necessarily being reflected here in Utah.

Maybe those annoying in-car buzzers get some of the credit. Nationally, officials say there are probably a number of reasons why seat belt use is now around 83 percent.

In Utah, it's at 86 percent. But Kristy Ribgy of the Utah Highway Safety Office says that's actually down from the last couple of years.

So who isn't buckling up?

"They are young males, age 18 to 24. They are drivers that really don't take precautions," she said.

Rigby says there's also concern in rural areas, where only about two-thirds of drivers buckle up. She doesn't expect the numbers to change dramatically without a primary seat belt law for adults.

The National Traffic Safety Administration estimates that for every 1 percent increase in seat belt use nationaly, about 270 lives are saved.

E-mail: mgiauque@ksl.com

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Marc Giauque

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