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Sep 11, 2012 8:56 PM by Matt Stafford

Celebrating lives saved by seat belts and motorcycle helmets

It's too often that we hear about lives cut short, because people weren't wearing their seat belts or their motorcycle helmets.

Tuesday it was a different story. Local law enforcement agencies are celebrating 12 people whose lives were saved because of safety devices. Each one of them knows first-hand how important it is to stay safe on the road.

"Once I knew I was being ejected from my motorcycle, I knew I was going to hit the hard top and the glass of the Jeep," Sgt. Sheldon Schnese, Colorado Springs Police Department. "I tried to protect myself with my hands but my head did hit the back of the Jeep; cracked the motorcycle helmet."

Sgt. Schnese was just returning to the force from his recovery on Tuesday.

Cheryl Fincher was in an accident with her daughter in the car, and they had their seatbelts on. Fincher had a broken wrist, but other than she was okay.

"I religiously wear seatbelts and the same with my daughter because it is important; I did lose my mother because of a safety belt and that she didn't wear one," says Fincher. "I do know that you can't always prevent an accident, but you can save your life."

Colorado Springs Police also brought out the Seat Belt Convincer, a machine showing what an accident feels like at just seven miles an hour. Robert Scott volunteers for the Colorado Springs Police Department and has been taking the machine around to local schools to show kids about the importance of buckling their seatbelts. Scott's son was paralyzed in an accident in 1988, two others died. They weren't wearing seatbelts.

If your organization is interested in bringing out the Seat Belt Convincer, please call CSPD at 444-7000.

For more on Drive Smart Colorado, click here.

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