Keeping teens safe while behind the wheel

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – School’s out for summer, and for many teenagers, that means a lot more time on the road to enjoy a break from the academic stresses they’ve endured the last nine months or so. Summertime means free time, cruising, the lake, part-time work, and fun with friends. However, automobile crashes are the number one killer of America’s teens, and statistics show that the danger is greatest in summer, with seven of the top 10 deadliest driving days often occurring between Memorial Day and Labor Day.

Let’s be honest. Safety is often not the first thought many teens have when they get behind the wheel. Foremost thoughts are frequently focused more on simply having fun, cruising with friends and enjoying free evenings with no homework deadlines to meet.”

Statistically for teens, common indicators of high risk and likelihood of serious injury or death include—speeding, drinking and driving, texting, not wearing seat belts, and multiple teen passengers.

Emily Rivera with State Farm shared with us this morning some tips and ideas on how parents can ensure they’re sending out safe drivers this summer.

One big point she focuses on is that of discussing drinking and driving. Talk to your young drivers about the dangers and repercussions of it. Make yourself available for if they do need a ride or help otherwise, and let them know that you are. Also help identify distractions. Remind them to put away their phones, turn down music, and pay attention while on the road. Over all, just make safety a priority for them, and don’t let up; have the initial conversation, but always remind them.

Emily also shared the recent partnering of State Farm with MADD-Mother’s Against Drunk Driving. They granted the organization with a $25,000 to curb underage drinking.

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