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Precious cargo on the road
by Chip Latcham
May 30, 2012 | 780 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
It’s happening all too frequently in our busy region nowadays. Two children were killed and three people injured in a collision involving two pickup trucks on U.S. Highway 181 near Pettus on May 24.

According to information from the DPS, four of the five passengers in a GMC pickup (including a 6-year-old boy and 4-year-old girl who died) were not wearing their seat belts.

How tragic. And it might have been preventable.

Beeville Police Chief Joe Treviño recently announced his officers would be strictly enforcing Texas’ seat belt law May 21 through June 3, during the annual Click it or Ticket campaign.

“Too many drivers and passengers on the road... are not wearing their seat belts,” Treviño said. “It all too often ends in tragedy.”

Some have noted that area officers should be paying extra attention and enforcing this law all year long, not just during the Memorial Day period.

In Karnes County, officials have seen a huge increase in the number of vehicle accidents. Many Bee Countians will quickly attest to the hazards of driving north on U.S. 181 with the Eagle Ford truck traffic.

Karnes officials encourage all drivers to be extremely cautious and drive defensively. It is recommended that drivers allow extra travel time so that they are not rushing.

The DPS offered the following tips:

• Don’t tailgate or flash your lights at another driver.

• If you’re in the left lane and someone wants to pass, move over and let the driver pass you.

• Use your horn sparingly.

• Slow down and drive to conditions.

• Drive friendly – yield to other drivers and be courteous.

• Maintain a safe following distance.

• Look both ways before you enter an intersection.

• Signal every turn and lane change.

• Stop at red lights and stop signs.

• Don’t drive if you’ve been drinking.

Again, drivers, don’t be in a hurry and pay attention. Don’t use the cell phone, text or otherwise become distracted. Obey the traffic laws and flashing lights. Just a few seconds glancing away from the highway could mean a collision with a truck weighing up to 80,000 pounds.

And, parents, please, make certain all passengers in your vehicle are safely buckled into their seats. It could prevent a tragedy.

– Chip Latcham
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