National Road Trip Highlights Dangers for Teen Drivers in Dallas
SADD and State Farm® Team Up to Raise Awareness on Seat Belt Safety
DALLAS, October 25, 2022 (Newswire.com) - Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) and State Farm are celebrating National Teen Driver Safety Week with a national call to action — a Rock the Belt Road Trip, bringing together State Farm Agents and student leaders from across the country. Today, the Road Trip stopped at the State Farm Texas Hub Office, where State Farm Agents served as subject matter experts, sharing tips for teens and parents on roadway safety.
According to reports from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), over half of teens (ages 15-19) killed in crashes weren't wearing a seat belt. The same is true with a young audience, where 90% of passengers (ages 13-19) weren't restrained.
Today's panel featured State Farm Agents Ray Givens and Jamie Detten, who spoke of the unique dangers that teen drivers face. The agents drove home the important message that parents and teens each play a role in setting operating expectations regarding seat belt usage and other behaviors like rural roadway dangers. The panel also included Christy Thomas from Texas A&M University's Transportation Center, Pam Shadel Fischer, Senior Director of External Engagement for the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), and Rick Birt, President and CEO of SADD. The panel featured findings from the new report from GHSA and State Farm, America's Rural Roads: Beautiful and Deadly, created as a guide for State Highway Safety Offices to address the surging number of roadway fatalities occurring on rural roadways.
In addition to the panel, SADD members and local law enforcement across the state and nation are participating in the "Quick Click Challenge." Agents, students, and law enforcement formed groups of four to race through the process of jumping in a car, buckling the seat belt, and then repeating the activity while rotating through all four positions in the vehicle. Agents across the country will use the "Agents of Change" Roadway Safety Presentation, developed by SADD students, to raise awareness of a leading cause of teen crashes. In partnership with SADD and the National Road Safety Foundation, State Farm is also making the Passport for Safe Driving available across the country for new drivers and their parents.
"We hope our road trip and this important stop in Texas help to create a culture of safety. At State Farm, we want to protect what matters most, and protecting our teen drivers is a key strategy. Together, we can reach zero roadway fatalities," said Gina Wilken, Public Affairs Analyst for State Farm.
"Today's activities were a fun reminder of the importance of seat belt safety. State Farm and SADD know that seat belts save lives, and we hope this road trip reminds every driver to make it a habit to buckle up," said Shreen Shavkani, the National Student President of SADD.
For more than 40 years, SADD, the nation's premier youth health safety organization, has worked to empower students, engage parents, mobilize communities, and change lives around the issues of traffic safety, substance abuse, and personal health and safety. SADD equips students with the resources they need to advocate for change in their communities through a national network of peer-led chapters in middle schools, high schools, and colleges. Join the movement by visiting www.sadd.org and following us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.