October was the deadliest month this year for traffic accidents where the victims were not wearing seatbelts, Minnesota public safety officials say.
Fifteen people killed on Minnesota roads last month were not buckled up, said State Patrol Lt. Eric Roeske.
All of those victims died outside the Twin Cities metro area, he said. Roeske said 80 percent of the fatal accidents where seatbelts were not worn happen in rural areas.
"Oftentimes, folks in greater Minnesota are driving on familiar roads," Roeske said. "They're in smaller towns. They don't see, or maybe they don't recognize that the risk is always there for of a crash, regardless of where you're at."
Rollover accidents are common in greater Minnesota, Roeske said, and in those cases seatbelts can prevent people from being ejected from their vehicles.