White Out in Florida
Event Draws Attention to Teen Safety
Larry Jewett - October 18, 2011 11:34 AM
Traffic crashes are the #1 killer of teens in Florida and in the United States. To keep more teens safe in the driver and passenger seats, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles joined five high schools in the state to host White Out events on Tuesday, October 18. The Department asked teens, parents, school employees and other safety partners around the state to participate by wearing a white shirt today to help white out teen crashes. National Teen Driver Safety Week is Oct. 16 – 22.
“Today’s white out is a good reminder that driving is a big responsibility and that parents and guardians play a key role in teaching their children safe driving behaviors that impact how they drive for their entire lives,” said DHSMV Executive Director Julie Jones. “With increased education and parental support, we can work together to save lives by reducing the number of crashes that involve teens.”
Teens (ages 15 – 19) have the highest crash rate of any age group in Florida. Statistics from the Florida Traffic Crash Statistics Report 2010 show 737,645 teens are licensed to drive in the Sunshine State. There were 26,848 crashes involved teens last year, resulting in the death of 144 teens (includes drivers and passengers) and injury to 18,543 (includes drivers and passengers). Florida’s teen drivers are twice as likely to crash as their parents and three times as likely to crash as their grandparents.
The Department has launched www.TakeTheWheel.net, an interactive website by teens for teens, as well as Drive with CARE (Courtesy, Attention, Responsibility, Experience) to educate teens and their parents about Florida’s Graduated Driver Licensing law and the importance of parental involvement in teaching teens to drive. Drive with CARE provides a drivers guide available online and in state and tax collector operated driver license offices throughout the state. The Florida Sheriffs Association, numerous state and local law enforcement agencies, and safety advocates throughout Florida are joining the Department in this important campaign.
To learn more about DHSMV and the services offered, visit www.flhsmv.gov, follow us on Twitter @FDHSMV or find us on Facebook.