Macayla Arrington and Victoria Thoman accepted the championship belt from Injury Prevention Resources, along with Wind River Principal Ceatriss Wall and School Resource Office Brett Johnson.

(Pavillion, Wyo.) – A Fremont County rivalry was renewed in November, and students from Wind River High School edged students from Shoshoni High School in the first Battle of the Belts seat belt competition.

The seat belt champions were crowned during a school assembly Wednesday afternoon in Pavillion.

Student and faculty drivers were surveyed for seat belt usage in early November as they entered school parking lots in their vehicles. Of 100 vehicles observed at each school, 55 percent of Shoshoni High School students were wearing their seat belts, while 65 percent of Wind River High School students were buckled up while driving. Seat belt compliance numbers were even lower for school staff members at the two schools.

Following November school assemblies with each student body with representatives from Injury Prevention Resources, Shoshoni students increased their seat belt usage to 73 percent and Wind River students increased their seat belt usage to 89 percent.

“Female students were more likely to buckle their seat belts at each school,” according to Tom Cunningham, safety education coordinator for Injury Prevention Resources in Riverton. “At Shoshoni, 54 percent of staff members wore their seat belts, and at Wind River, staff members buckled up at a rate of 96 percent.

“There’s still room for improvement at both schools,” Cunningham said. “We are trying to remind young drivers, and all other drivers too, that buckling your seat belt is the single most important thing you can do to save your life while driving. Please buckle up and safely enjoy the upcoming holiday season.”

The Battle of the Belts competition was sponsored by Injury Prevention Resources, Fremont County Sheriff’s Office, Wyoming Highway Patrol, and Wyoming Department of Transportation.

–Photos and content provided by WyDOT.

Wind River High School senior Charles Oldman wears the professional wrestling-styled championship belt following the ceremony at WRHS on Wednesday.

Wind River High School senior Charles Oldman wears the professional wrestling-styled championship belt following the ceremony at WRHS on Wednesday.