Parents and teens get harsh lesson about driving
BLACKSBURG — Students and parents at Blacksburg High School were given a dose of reality Tuesday night as they learned about the statistics related to teen driving, traffic accidents and distractions.
The Partners for Safe Teen Driving program was designed to “reduce the incidences of teenage automobile crashes, injuries and fatalities in Virginia,” according to www.safeteendriving.org.
Blacksburg High health and physical education teacher Becky Bailey said this is the fifth year the school has participated in the program and that she hopes students realize the dangers they face behind the wheel.
“Car crashes are the leading cause of death among teenagers, and that’s why we’re trying to educate them,” Bailey said. “Especially now will all the texting and the distractions.”
Bailey said the program is also aimed at getting parents more involved.
Parents are the most influential people on a student’s life, she said, even if they don’t think that’s true.
The event allowed parents and students to walk through the entire driving process from driver education training to licensing and insuring in the commonwealth of Virginia.
Seann Gaynor, who heads the physical education department at Auburn High School, presented students and parents with statistics on the number of fatalities related to teenage drivers.
The school’s resource officer also shared statistics, showed videos of crash re-enactments and shared his experiences as a crash reconstructionist.
Juvenile and Domestic Relations Judge Robert Viar Jr. spoke briefly about the importance of the licensing process and how he serves each juvenile in the 27th Judicial District of Virginia.
Lastly, representatives from Nationwide Insurance told parents about the importance of insuring their student-drivers properly and how insurance rates are affected by young drivers and their actions.
Throughout the night, parents were encouraged to monitor their child’s driving habits and help them learn to become better drivers through leading by example.
The program encouraged parents to learn state laws regarding the number of passengers their child may transport, as well as curfew laws.
Principal Brian Kitts said the program was a great opportunity for students and parents to learn about traffic safety and a chance for them to learn more about safety education.
“We want to make sure when they get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, they’re making good decisions and thinking about the consequences of their actions,” Kitts said.
Kitts said there were 83 traffic fatalities in Virginia last year involving youth and that he hoped the program helps to reduce that number and to make students aware of the real possibility of that happening.
“We want to make sure we provide them with the opportunity to be safe and make good decisions as young drivers.”
The Roanoke Times | 381-8627
No Comments »
No comments yet.