17:00 PM

ND Law Enforcement Agencies Looking For Kids Wearing Bike Helmets

While on patrol this summer, North Dakota law enforcement agencies will be looking for kids wearing helmets. If caught, a child may find themselves making a trip to a local Dairy Queen restaurant.

As part of AAA's "I Got Caught" campaign, as many as 12,000 North Dakota youth will be written a 'citation' for a free small DQ cone for wearing a helmet while biking, skateboarding or in-line skating. (Note: A list of participating law enforcement agencies is included below).

"We want to encourage youth to wear a helmet in hopes they develop a lifelong appreciation for safety," said Gene LaDoucer, North Dakota spokesman for AAA-The Auto Club Group. "Program sponsors enjoy providing positive reinforcement to youth and hope parents will take the next step in modeling the desired habit of wearing helmets themselves."

According to a recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study, helmets reduced overall head injuries by about 60 percent and reduced fatalities by about 73 percent. The study also found that law enforcement and other safety officials can reinforce the need to wear a helmet through positive interactions such as free or discounted helmet distribution programs and incentives for helmet use.

Supporting sponsors of the annual campaign include the North Dakota Sheriffs and Deputies Association, the North Dakota Chiefs of Police Association, Vision Zero and Safe Kids coalitions in Bismarck, Grand Forks, Fargo and Minot.

Due to overwhelming positive response from communities, the number of citations provided law enforcement agencies across North Dakota has grown over the eight years of the program, according to LaDoucer. Since 2013, more than 80,000 citations for a free DQ ice cream cone have been issued to youth across the state.

For more information about the Dairy Queen system, visit DairyQueen.com. Connect with the DQ system on Twitter using #HappyTastesGood and follow the system at twitter.com/dairyqueen. Visit the DQ Facebook fan page and become a friend at facebook.com/dairyqueen.

Participating Agencies (at time of release)

Barnes Co. Sheriff's Office

Bismarck Police Dept

Burleigh Co. Sheriff's Office

Cass Co. Sheriff's Office

Dickinson Police Dept

Emerado Police Dept

Fargo Police Dept

Grand Forks Police Dept

Jamestown Police Dept

Lincoln Police Dept

Mandan Police Dept

McHenry Co. Sheriff's Office

McLean Co. Sheriff's Office

Minot Police Dept

Nelson County Sheriff

North Dakota Highway Patrol

Powers Lake Police Dept

Surrey Police Dept

Valley City Police Dept

Wahpeton Police Dept

Ward Co. Sheriff's Office

West Fargo Police Dept

Williams Co. Sheriff's Office

Williston Police Dept

Wishek Police Dept