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National Teen Driver Safety Week
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By EMS Captain Liz Murphy
October 17, 2023

This week, October 15-21, 2023 is National Teen Driver Safety Week. As the school year is underway, along with Fall Sports and after school jobs, it’s important to stay safe behind the wheel. Motor vehicle crashes remain the primary cause of death for teens between the ages of 15 and 18 years old in the United States.
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) list the following factors as some of the biggest risk for Teens while behind the wheel.
*Impaired Driving

*Seat Belts: NHTSA shows in 2021, more than half (51%) of the teen drivers who dies in crashes were not wearing a seat belt. And when the teen driver involved in the fatal crash was unbuckled, 9 out of 10 of the passengers who died were also not wearing a seat belt.

*Distracted Driving: In the State of Maryland, Maryland law prohibits driver from using their phones while driving. Drivers also can be ticketed for writing, sending, or reading a text or email while driving.
**Maryland also has “Jake’s Law” which went into effect in 2014. Jake’s Law states “a driver that causes serious injury or death while talking on a handheld cell phone or texting may receive a prison sentence of up to three years and a fine up to $5,000.”
**The Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) also has their “Toward Zero Deaths” Campaign & “Park the Phone Before You Drive” Campaign, which both aim to eliminate traffic related deaths due to distracted driving. For more on both Campaigns visit www.zerodeathsmd.gov

*Speeding

*Passengers

For more information about National Teen Driver Safety Week and other safe driving tips visit: www.nhsta.gov/road-safety/teen-driving or www.trafficsafetymarketing.gov

As many teens are now becoming First Responders, it is our responsibility to ensure are younger members understand the risks associated with driving. Please remind all your members, especially your Teen members, to “Arrive Alive”.


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