Teen Driver Safety Week; How You Can Prevent 1,000,000 Crashes from Happening

In 2016, teens were involved in more than 1,000,000 crashed nationwide, hundreds of thousands which were fatal

FARGO, N.D. — As a part of Teen Driver Safety Week, the Fargo Police Department and Triple A are asking parents to have a talk with their kids.

KVRR’s Jessie Cohen tells us why too many teens are dying on the roads.

“In 2016, teens were involved in more than 1,000,000 crashed nationwide,” said Gene LaDoucer, with AAA in Fargo.

And it’s no coincidence hundreds of thousands of those crashes are fatal.

“Passengers can be a distraction for them, speed can be an issue, driving too fast for conditions, night driving, all those factors impact on young inexperienced drivers.”

The times are changing.

“It’s not just alcohol anymore a lot of times it’s just distracted driving,” said Jessica Schindeldecker, with Fargo Police.

Many think texting is what’s taking the lives of so many.

“Technology is only the number two reason that we see teens involved in distracted driving crashes,” LaDoucer said.

So what is the main thing interfering with their eyes on the road?

“The number one distraction is other teen passengers,” LaDoucer said.

AAA suggests during the first 6 to 12 months for new drivers, parents don’t allow more than one other teen passenger in the vehicle.

“As the passenger it is your responsibility to make sure that you’re supporting a really good environment for that driver too as well,” Schindeldecker said.

But Fargo Police also warns to set a good example.

“If you don’t want your teen to be driving while distracted such as putting on your make up, or eating or drinking, looking at your phone. If you’re telling your child not to do this, then you shouldn’t be doing it too as well,” Schindeldecker said.

You should also make sure your kids are prepared.

“When did your driver, your teen driver, your new driver learn to drive. Did they learn to drive in the spring, the summer, or the fall but they don’t know how to drive in the wintertime,” Schindeldecker said.

“The first snowfall, the first time we get freezing rain, take your teen out driving and let them learn how the car reacts,” LaDoucer said.

Otherwise you don’t know what will happen when they aren’t prepared.

The truth is, drivers need experience, something teens don’t have.

But there are steps to take to prepare them and make sure no more zeroes are added to that million.

Throughout Teen Safety Driving Week Fargo Police will be posting tips on how to have those important conversations with your kids.

Check out their Facebook for details.

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