ANDOVER, Kan. - The Andover Police Department is one of several departments across the state stepping up patrols near high schools.
For the next two weeks, officers are making sure students are wearing seat belts, going the speed limit and not texting and driving.
The SAFE (Seatbelts Are For Evreyone) program teaches teens good driving habits. The school resource officers in the Andover district give presentations to students throughout the year. From February 24 through March 6, officers are increasing presence near the Andover and Andover Central high schools.
"They're given different programs, education programs during the school year, so they're aware of it. At this point, they should be wearing their seat belts all the time. If they're not, or they're texting and driving or speeding, they will be getting a citation for it," says Lt. Ben Graber.
Teens have a higher risk of getting into a crash. The SAFE program teaches teens how to reduce that risk. It also teaches the importance of wearing seatbelts, that can save their life if they do get into a crash.
APD says it's a tough conversation to have with teens, but including videos and pictures helps communicate the message.
"They're bad crashes, but i think it needs to be seen so kids have an understanding of what could come of their decision not to wear a seat belt or not be completely focused on the road," Lt. Graber says.
APD says it's not just for teens. Anyone driving near the high schools not following the law could get a ticket.
Click here for more information on the SAFE program.