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Editorial: It's time to belt up and slow down

Most of us living in west central Minnesota enjoy the rural atmosphere and open spaces. Most believe the rural life is better and safer than living in the big city.

That often tends to be true, except upon our rural highways across the region.

When we drive our vastly rural highways, some of us often drive a bit over the speed limit. Others may be texting or talking on their cell phones. Moreover, there are those who drive under the influence.

All are dangerous and even fatal on occasion.

When law enforcement rush to an accident in west central Minnesota, the officers find that speed and seat belt usage often play a major role.

Take Kandiyohi County as an example of driving habits.

A recent review of Kandiyohi County's crash data revealed that the county was exceeding the state average for non-compliance with seat belt usage and for excessive speed that involved a fatality or incapacitating injuries.

As a result, Kandiyohi County is eligible for a grant program to help implement an education and enforcement program.

While increased enforcement often improves compliance, there is individual responsibility in complying with seat belt and speed regulations.

It is also in the best interest and safety for you and your family to comply with our seat belt and speed regulations.

The life or limb you save may be your own.