Jeff Dorris

Deliberations from Dorris

Jeff Dorris is the Editor of the Delta Dunklin Democrat


Safety Measures

Saturday, December 7, 2019

My oldest granddaughter has driver’s learning permit.

She has never been more excited.

I will never know true peace again.

It’s always an exciting time for a teenager when they’re finally allowed to get behind the wheel and drive around town.

There are some positives to our kids driving.

They can run to the store for us when we’re out of bread.

A definite plus.

But there are some alarming statistics concerning young drivers.

Every 32 minutes, an impaired driver kills somebody on a U.S. Road.

My granddaughter lives in Wisconsin. Some of their area high schools participated in “Every 32 Minutes,” an exercise in which students were taken one by one from class and not allowed to interact with anyone for 24 hours.

Each “dead” student was taken to a secret location, often on a gurney to symbolize the way they died, every 32 minutes throughout the school day.

A close relative or friend would then read that particular student’s obituary to drive home the message, no amount of death via an impaired driver is acceptable.

It’s a creative idea that hopefully turns students into safer drivers.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than eight people are killed and 1,161 people are injured each day in the United States by crashes involving a distracted driver.

Studies have shown that many intoxicated drivers who are involved in fatal crashes are between the agers of 16 and 20.

The numbers don’t lie. Young drivers face more risk on the road.

I want my granddaughter to enjoy the privilege of driving, I just want her to be aware of some of the pitfalls young drivers fall into.

Cellphones, with text messaging, social media notifications and streaming entertainment, can also make a deadly combination.

We can all be a little more vigilant these days, especially with all the new technological distractions we face while in our vehicles.

See you out there.

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