DENVER (KDVR) — More Coloradans are buckling up than ever before, according to a new study released by the Colorado Department of Transportation on Friday. 

The statewide survey conducted by CDOT this summer revealed that 88.6% of Colorado drivers were wearing a seat belt, up from 87% in 2022.

The number still trails behind the national average of 91.6% but continues on an upward trend of seat belt use in recent years.

FOX31 highlighted the problem last month after speaking with a Parker woman who lost her daughter in an unrestrained crash. Christy Schultz has been visiting schools across the state, hoping her daughter’s story can convince others to buckle up.

“I’ve had several kids tell me, ‘I was in an accident and because of Sammie’s story, all my friends had their seat belts on, and they buckled up,’” Schultz said. “Her story is living on, and we’re helping to save other kids and families from going through such heartache.”

In June, retired Colorado state troopers helped an outside contractor observe 93,520 vehicles across 26 counties. A total of 114,637 drivers and passengers were observed and recorded, averaging 88.6% seat belt use.

Best counties for seat belt use:

  • Arapahoe (98.16%)
  • Garfield (97.37%)
  • Douglas (96.82%)
  • Grand (96.73%)
  • Park (95.82%)

Worst counties for seat belt use: 

  • Morgan (84.34%)
  • Logan (83.78%)
  • El Paso (79.35%)
  • Pueblo (74.46%)
  • Jefferson (73.50%) 

Certain counties continue to struggle with compliance, while others exceed the national average.