Alabama pediatricians promote safe driving to teens

For years, Alabama parents with teenage drivers have been cautioning their sons and daughters to slow down, not drink and drive and put away their cell phones while driving. Unfortunately, much of the advice parents and educators try to bestow upon teen drivers falls on deaf ears, with many teens continuing to be involved in car accidents.

In an effort to curb unsafe driving behaviors, Alabama safety officials are trying a new approach and enlisting the help of pediatricians. Officials are hopeful that teens and pre-teens will be more receptive to messages related to safe driving practices if that advice is delivered by their doctor.

To help them deliver their message, pediatricians will be supplied a toolkit with essential information. The content provided in the toolkit was devised by both pediatricians and officials as the Alabama Safe Teen Driving Coalition.

Alabama currently ranks second in the nation for the highest number of fatal car accidents involving teen drivers. To promote safe driving habits, Alabama passed a Graduated License Law in 2002 which consists of three phases.

During stage one of Alabama's Graduated License program, a 15-year-old can obtain a driver's permit and is allowed to drive when an individual age 21 or older is in the front passenger seat. In stage two, a 16-year-old can obtain an intermediate driver's license that allows them to drive between 6 a.m. and midnight. The final stage occurs when a teen turns 17-year-old at which time they are permitted a full-fledged driver's license.

Source: WTVY, "Alabama Unveils Safe Teen Driving Toolkit with Pediatricians Help," Muriel Bailey, Sept. 27, 2012

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