Orland Park Police Present Saved by the Belt Awards

Orland Park Police Present Saved by the Belt Awards
Posted on 04/10/2018

The Orland Park Police Department recently recognized two local residents with Saved by the Belt (SBB) Awards for surviving traffic car crashes thanks to proper seat belt use.

Police Chief Tim McCarthy, Village Trustee Pat Gira, and Patrol Division Commander Brian West presented Mary Young of Palos Hills, and Elias Atiyeh of Oak Forest, with SBB Awards on April 5.

In 2017, both recipients were involved in roll-over crashes in Orland Park with OPPD responding to the accidents.

'The Saved by the Belt Award is a great way to show the public that seat belts can and do save lives," said Trustee Pat Gira, chair of the village"s Public Safety Committee. 'Both honorees were wearing their seat belts and were able to walk away without major injuries."

According to the Orland Park Police report, last November Young was traveling on 143rd St. at Creek Xing Dr. when her car hit a patch of ice. The vehicle slid off the road, rolled over and came to a rest on the driver's side. Young sustained no injuries due to wearing her seat belt.

In July, 16-year-old Atiyeh made a right turn onto LaGrange Rd. from 171st St., and lost control of the vehicle. The driver and witness stated there was no reckless driving - just an inexperienced driver. The vehicle spun out of control and rolled over twice. Both driver and passenger sustained very minor injuries due to wearing their seat belts.

'Both accidents could have been fatal to the drivers and any passengers," said Chief McCarthy. 'As soon as you get behind the wheel and before you put the key into the ignition, buckle yourself in and make sure all your passengers do the same."

The Orland Park Police Department participates in the Illinois Department of Transportation"s Bureau of Safety Programs and Engineering (BSPE)"s Saved by the Belt (SBB) Award to increase awareness of the lifesaving value of seat belts and car seats.

The purpose of the program is to identify individuals whose lives have been saved or injuries significantly reduced due to motorists wearing a seat belt or passengers secured in a car seat at the time of a crash. SBB reinforces the life-saving importance of occupant protection for individuals involved in motor vehicle crashes and encourages others to utilize them.

Saved by the Belt also increases public awareness on the benefits of proper safety belt and car seat usage.