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Hudson - Litchfield News July 15, 2011 - 7


Evan Fincher Wins College-Sponsored Merit Scholarship


More than 1,700 additional winners of National Merit Scholarships financed by colleges and universities have been announced by National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC). These Merit Scholar designees join over 2,900 other college-sponsored award recipients who were announced in late May. Officials of each sponsor college selected their winners from among Finalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program who will attend their institution. College-sponsored awards provide between $500 and $2,000 annually for up to four years of undergraduate study at the institution financing the scholarship. This year, 198 colleges and universities are sponsoring about 4,800 Merit Scholarship awards. Sponsor colleges include 118 private and 80 public institutions located in 45 states and the District of Columbia.


Additional College-Sponsored Merit Scholarship Winners


This final group of winners brings the number of 2011 National Merit Scholars to approximately 8,300. These distinguished high school graduates will receive scholarships for undergraduate study worth a total of nearly $35 million. In addition to college-sponsored awards, two other types of National Merit Scholarships were offered—2,500 National Merit $2,500 Scholarships, for which all Finalists competed and over 1,000 corporate- sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for Finalists who met criteria specified by their grantor organizations.


2011 National Merit Scholarship Competition This year’s competition for National Merit


Scholarships began when approximately 1.5 million juniors in some 22,000 high schools took the 2009 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT), which served as an initial screen of program entrants. In September 2009, some 16,000 Semifinalists were named on a state representational basis, in


S P.S.A. E


Hudson Police- Public Service Announcement


Seatbelt Safety Awareness


by Master Patrol Officer Roger Lamarche, Hudson Police Department


Motorists are likely aware the New Hampshire and the


federal governments have awarded grants to police departments throughout the state for additional enforcement of seatbelt laws. As you travel to your local Wal-Mart, you may see officers visually inspecting cars entering to be sure seatbelt laws are being followed. Perhaps you observed the officers at your children’s schools. As police officers entrusted in our community’s safety, we would like to make our citizens more aware of the law in New Hampshire, how it affects each of us, and some facts regarding seatbelt safety. The State of New Hampshire requires only occupants less than


18 years of age to be restrained by seatbelts or child seats. New Hampshire is the only state in the country that does not require all occupants, regardless of age, to be belted. Our seatbelt law is a primary enforcement law. This means a police officer may stop the vehicle based solely on the seatbelt infraction observed. Of the 50 states and the District of Columbia, there are only 32 primary enforcement states. At least in New Hampshire, we have a law designed to save our most precious assets, our children. Unfortunately, 16 to 24 year old drivers wear seatbelts the least of all the age groups. Last year, there were over 32,500 traffic fatalities nationwide.


This number was down from 2009, where it was over 33,000. Since 2005, it has dropped 25 percent when it was over 43,000 fatalities that year. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) credits this to its campaigns such as “Click it or Ticket.” It also cites campaigns against drunk driving and the overall manufacturing of safer vehicles. With the ever-increasing traffic, these significant drops are encouraging, but there is more NHTSA would like to see.


NHTSA studies in 2008 determined over 13,250 lives were


saved from seatbelt use that year. From 2004 to 2008, that number totaled 75,000 lives. Further, in 2007, 42 percent of all passenger occupants killed in collisions were unbelted. Nationwide, it is currently estimated 88 percent of all occupants wear seatbelts. Additionally, the study for 2007 shows 42 percent of all traffic


fatalities came from the 12 percent of vehicle occupants unrestrained. NHTSA wants to increase the number of belted occupants. Their goal is to reach 90 percent in every state. New Hampshire, unfortunately, has the lowest seatbelt use rate at 63.8 percent.


What does this mean for our community? In 2009, there were 110 fatalities in New Hampshire. That number increased in 2010, while most of the nation had a decline in traffic deaths. It is estimated if New Hampshire was to reach 90 percent seatbelt use, an additional 17 lives a year maybe saved, 347 less serious bodily injuries suffered, 313 less minor injuries, and over $ 84,000,000 in total cost savings (based on 2007 dollars). Often, we say, “It won’t happen in Hudson.” Well, most serious collisions occur within 25 miles of our home. Hudson Police responded to over 800 collisions in 2010. In Hudson, there were over 550 state reportable collisions last year, meaning a police report was required due to injury, total amount of damage, or hit-and-run. Of these reportable crashes, 99 resulted in non- incapacitating injuries, two were serious injuries, and one was fatal. Interestingly enough, these results are also encouraging. It may be more than a coincidence that of these reports, a seatbelt or restraint was worn by 87 percent of all occupants, a number significantly higher than the state average of 63.8 percent. Those who do not use restraints may say they have a new, safe


vehicle with high tech airbags. Unfortunately, airbags are designed to be used with a seatbelt. If one does not wear the belt, one may have rendered the airbag insufficient to help. Some may insist they would be better off thrown from the vehicle, than stuck in it in case of fire or submersion. This argument is without merit, as less than 1 percent of all serious collisions nationwide end up with fire or submersions and 73 percent of all occupants thrown from vehicles die. So, please remember, serious injuries or death can result in crashes in Hudson like anywhere else, but it can also be prevented. Buckle up; it may save your life. Questions and/or comments may be directed to MPO Lamarche at rlamarche@hudsonnh.gov.


numbers proportional to each state’s percentage of the national total of high school graduating seniors. Semifinalists were the highest-scoring program entrants in each state and represented less than one percent of a state’s seniors. To become a Finalist, each Semifinalist had to submit a detailed scholarship application, which included writing an essay and describing contributions and leadership activities in high school and the community, have an outstanding academic record, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, and earn SAT scores that confirm the qualifying test performance. From the Semifinalist group, about 15,000 attained Finalist standing, and more than half of the Finalists were chosen to receive National Merit Scholarships.


Established in 1955 to conduct the National Merit Scholarship Program, NMSC


is a not-for-profit corporation that operates without government assistance. Over the past 56 years, more than 284,000 outstanding young men and women have won National Merit Scholarships worth nearly $1 billion. The majority of awards offered each year are underwritten by approximately 440 independent corporate and college sponsors that support NMSC’s efforts to recognize scholastically talented youth and encourage the pursuit of academic excellence. This year’s National Merit Tufts University


Scholarship winner is Alvirne High School’s graduate Evan P. Fincher. Evan’s career field will be Computer Science.


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Speed Probable Cause of Litchfield Motorcycle Crash


submitted by Litchfield Police Department On Sunday, July 3, at approximately 7 p.m., Litchfield police responded to a motorcycle crash on Charles Bancroft Highway, in the area of number 19. Glenn Nichols, 46, of Manchester was operating a 2002 Honda motorcycle northbound when he lost control and went off the roadway and struck a mailbox. Witnesses stated that after hitting the mailbox, Nichols was thrown from


the motorcycle, where he then collided with a sign. Nichols was transported to Southern New Hampshire Medical Center in Nashua and then flown to Dartmouth Medical Center in Lebanon. Nichols was not wearing a helmet at the time of the accident. The crash is still under investigation, but it does appear as though speed was a factor.


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Inspired by Best Friend, Hudson Girl Donates to Locks of Love


Chloe Provencher, 9, of Hudson donated her hair to Locks of Love over 4th of July weekend. She was inspired by her best friend who did this in April. Chloe is already planning to grow her out for another donation next summer. Her family is very proud of her for making this donation!


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