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Seat-belt usage by employees of Church earns agency's award

Employees of the Church buckle up in large numbers, leading to the awarding of a "70% Plus" seat-belt usage award from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Feb. 24.

To qualify for the "70% Plus" NHTSA Honor Roll, an organization of more than 100 employees must achieve 70 percent or better seat belt usage in two observational surveys.About 80 percent of Church employees surveyed in Salt Lake City were wearing seat belts, well above the national average of about 60 percent.

Bishop Richard C. Edgley, second counselor in the Presiding Bishopric, received the award on behalf of the Church. Louis DeCarolis, regional administrator of NHTSA, made the presentation. Representatives of the Church's Risk Management Division and the Utah State Department of Health also were present.

"We are very pleased to present this award to the employees of the LDS Church," said DeCarolis. "I'm truly impressed to learn about all of the traffic safety measures you encourage, including among your missionaries. This achievement sets a good example for all Utahns and is a credit to the thousands of LDS Church members and their care and love for one another. It only takes a few seconds to buckle up, and those few seconds can mean the difference between a frightened but unharmed family, or the terrible loss of loved ones."

DeCarolis said United States traffic fatalities in 1992 totaled 39,500, the lowest figure since 1921. He attributed that declining figure to the increased use of seat belts.

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