Teenage drunk driving kills eight teens every day. That is 2,920 teens that are not with us anymore in a normal year and 2,928 in a leap year. 60% of all teen deaths in car accidents are alcohol related. These are statistics that can easily be avoided. Teens who drive while under the influence are also more likely to be in an accident than adults who drive while intoxicated. Experts believe this is because teens have less driving experience and often overestimate their driving abilities. Teens also engage in more risk-taking behaviors, such as speeding.
Do not be a statistic. Know your limits. Know your friends limits. Here is how you can help stop this tragedy:
|Volunteer to help organize a fun, alcohol-free post-prom party at your high school.||Hide keys. Don’t be afraid to take someone’s car keys. If the person gets angry, it’s probably proof you’re doing the right thing.||Call a taxi. Sometimes even the designated driver slips. If nobody in your group is sober, take alternate transportation. Cab, train, bus, horse and buggy – anything’s better than getting in the car with a drunk driver.|
|Sign a “contract for life” with your child. This is an agreement that your child will call you anytime they need a ride home, if they or their friends have been drinking. In exchange, you will not ask any questions until a later, calmer time.||Write letters to local stores that sell alcohol letting them know that you will not patronize any shops that sell alcohol to minors.||Choose a designated driver. Decide who’s going to be doing the driving before you go out, and make sure that person doesn’t drink any alcoholic beverages.|
|Distribute MADD brochures at your church, your school’s parents’ associations, and other organization (brochures can be downloaded free on their websites, or you can call them).|