New Jersey high school students recently participated in an event organized by the Brain Injury Alliance of New Jersey aimed at reducing traffic deaths among young people. The “U Got Brains Champion Schools” competition encouraged New Jersey high school students to brainstorm ideas that could help teenagers avoid dangerous driving behaviors, such as texting while driving. For example, some of the ideas participants came up with included creating tags with the names of loved ones killed in drunk driving accidents.
Fifty-nine schools across the state competed to create an award-winning idea to help make New Jersey roads safer. One school developed a program where students were asked to shoot baskets while texting and another encouraged using an app that blocked incoming texts while driving.
Why Is Driving Safety So Important For Teenagers?
Texting while driving, drinking while driving and other dangerous behaviors behind the wheel kill tens of thousands of young people every year. According to statistics released by the Federal Communications Commission, 40 percent of teenagers report riding in a car with drivers who put them in danger by using a mobile phone.
Statistics from Mothers Against Drunk Driving show car accidents are the leading cause of deaths among teenagers, and one-quarter of those accidents involve alcohol.
What Other Programs Can Teach Teenagers Driving Safety Techniques?
Although the Brain Injury Alliance of New Jersey has launched a grassroots campaign to show teenagers the dangers of texting and driving, some schools have gone a step further and utilized video game simulators.
Students at a New Jersey high school used a driving simulator that showed them what it is like to drive under the influence or while distracted. After completing the simulation, students received a report showing them if they had committed crimes like vehicular manslaughter. Many students at the high school called the event a “wake up call”.
This is not the first time event organizers have used simulators to let high school students try distracted or impaired driving. Recently, high schools across New Jersey used simulators to let students attempt drinking and driving. The event was organized to show high school seniors the consequences of drinking and driving after graduation.
Survivors of car accidents can sustain brain injuries and spinal cord injuries, leaving them permanently disabled. For drivers that cause accidents through negligent or reckless driving, legal consequences can include costly lawsuits and life-ruining criminal penalties.
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