Byron Police on Prom, Motorcycles, and 'Click it or Ticket'

By: From the Byron Police Dept.
By: From the Byron Police Dept.

Prom Safety Message Results in Safe Prom

BRYON (BPD) -- The Byron Police Department participated in several activities prior to prom, and during prom, to stop teens that may have been tempted to drink and drive. The Byron Police Department is proud to say that there were no accidents or arrests involving teens drinking and driving this prom season.

The Byron Police Department would like to thank the Byron High School S.A.D.D. Chapter who assisted in getting the word out about providing alcohol to minors. They teamed up with the police department to tag alcohol in retail stores with warnings of what could happen should adults provide alcohol to minors. S.A.D.D also provided “Contracts for Life” in which teens committed to each other to make the right choice during prom. Information of when area proms would be held was provided to retail liquor stores by the Byron Police Department so that they would be aware of when proms were to help deter sales. Officers placed “Kiss It Goodbye” materials on cars prior to prom to remind teens of why not to drink and drive. Finally, officers placed more “Kiss It Goodbye” materials on cars during prom along with pamphlets explaining that we “Bust Them Because We Care”.

The Byron Police Department is committed to eliminating unlawful consumption of alcohol by minors and impaired driving from our roads. “Prom goers stayed safe during prom weekend and for that we thank them,” said Chief Todd Murray of the Byron Police Department.

Byron Police Department Promotes “Sharing the Road” During MotorcycleSafety Awareness Month
Motorcyclist Fatalities Have Increased After Decline in 2009

Motorcyclist fatalities increased slightly in 2010 to 4,502, accounting for 14 percent of total fatalities for the year. This increase in motorcycle fatalities for the year resumes the unfortunate overall increasing trend over the last 13 years, an upward trend that saw only a single one-year decline in 2009, when 4,462 motorcyclists were killed. However, the greatest decrease in the estimated number of injured people is among motorcyclists, with an 8.9-percent decrease.

In response to this increase, the Byron Police Department announced today that it is joining with other federal, state and local highway safety, law enforcement, and motorcycle organizations in proclaiming May as “Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month.” During this time – and during the rest of the year - motorists and other road users are reminded to safely “share the road” with motorcycles, and to be extra alert to help keep motorcyclists safe. Changing the driving habits of motorists and motorcyclists alike will help decrease the numbers of motorcyclist killed and injured in crashes. Motorcyclists are reminded to make sure that they are visible to motorists, and that they follow the rules of the road. All road users are reminded to never drive, ride, walk or bicycle while distracted.

“As the weather improves, more and more motorcyclists are hitting the roads,” said Chief Murray. “And with that in mind, pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers of all vehicles, including SUVs, passenger cars and trucks, need to be extra attentive and make sure they ‘share the road.’ A motorcycle is one of the smallest vehicles on our roads, often hidden in a car or truck’s blind spot. Every driver needs to aggressively look for them before changing lanes or merging with traffic.”

Motorists and bicyclists should perform visual checks for motorcyclists by checking mirrors and blind spots before they enter or exit a lane of traffic, and at intersections. Pedestrians should also get into the habit of scanning for motorcyclists who might be hidden by other traffic.

Chief Murray reminds all road users that, “Motorcyclists have responsibilities, too.” “They should obey traffic rules, be alert to other drivers, never ride while impaired or distracted, and always wear a Department of Transportation-compliant helmet and other protective gear.”

Chief Murray said that a motorcyclist is much more vulnerable than a passenger vehicle occupant in the event of a crash. Heshe said that research from DOT’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that per vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclists are about 39 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in traffic crashes.

Chief Murray offered tips for drivers to help keep motorcyclists safe on our roadways.

-Remember, a motorcycle is a vehicle with all of the rights and privileges of any other motor vehicle.
-Always allow a motorcyclist the full lane width—never try to share a lane.
-Perform a visual check for motorcycles by checking mirrors and blind spots before entering or exiting a lane of traffic, and at intersections.
-Always signal your intentions before changing lanes or merging with traffic.
-Don’t be fooled by a flashing turn signal on a mo¬torcycle – motorcycle signals are often not self-canceling and riders sometimes forget to turn them off. Wait to be sure the motorcycle is going to turn before you proceed.
-Allow more following distance - three or four sec¬onds - when behind a motorcycle so the motorcyclist has enough time to maneuver or stop in an emer¬gency.
-Never tailgate. In dry conditions, motorcycles can stop more quickly than cars.
-Never drive while distracted.

Chief Murray said motorcyclists can increase their safety by:

-Avoiding riding in poor weather conditions;
-Wearing brightly colored protective gear and a DOT-compliant helmet;
-Using turn signals for every turn or lane change, even if the rider thinks no one will see it;
-Combining hand signals and turn signals to draw more attention to themselves;
-Using reflective tape and stickers to increase conspicuity;
-Positioning themselves in the lane where they will be most visible to other drivers; and
-Never driving while impaired.

Our message to all drivers and motorcyclists is: Help to share in the responsibility of keeping all road users safe, and do your part by safely “sharing the road.”

Byron Police joins Click It or Ticket Campaign
To Boost Safety Belt Use – Day and Night

Motorists who refuse to wear their safety belt – beware. The 2012 Illinois Click It or Ticket safety belt enforcement campaign kicks off May 11 to help save lives by cracking down on those who do not buckle up through the Memorial Day holiday weekend.

The Byron Police Department is joining the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), the Illinois State Police (ISP) and over 500 local law enforcement agencies across the state to save more lives by strongly enforcing safety belt laws around the clock.

Provisional numbers show that during the 2011 Memorial Day weekend there were 13 fatalities and over 700 injuries on Illinois roadways. Six of those fatalities were alcohol-related. Remember – wearing your safety belt is your best defense against an impaired driver.

Nationwide in 2010, 61 percent of the 10,647 passenger vehicle occupants who were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes overnight (6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.) were not wearing their safety belts at the time of the fatal crash. This compared to 42 percent during the daytime hours, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

“Too many drivers and passengers on the road at night are not wearing their safety belts, and it all too often ends in tragedy,” said Chief Todd Murray. “Our goal is to save more lives, so Byron police Department will be out enforcing safety belt laws around the clock.”

During 2010 in Illinois, an average of over 17 unrestrained passenger vehicle occupants were killed in crashes each hour between midnight and 3:59 am, compared to an average of less than 10 per hour who were unrestrained and killed during daytime crashes.

Safety belts save thousands of lives across America each year and [Local Law Enforcement Agency] is helping spread the word. NHTSA statistics show that in 2010 alone, safety belts saved an estimated 12,546 lives nationwide.


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