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Curbing Dangerous Distracted Driving by Teens


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One in four American teens of driving age say they have texted while driving, and half of all teens ages 12 to 17 say they’ve been a passenger while a driver has texted.

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Curbing Dangerous Distracted Driving by Teens

  1. 1. For Immediate ReleaseFor Immediate Release April 22, 2013Contact: Damian Becker, Manager of Media Relations(516) 377-5370Curbing Dangerous Distracted Driving by TeensSouth Nassau Communities Hospital Community Education, Pediatrics offer tipsto help parents guide teens to avoid the dangers of distracted drivingOceanside, NY –Distracted driving -- whether texting, talking, playing loud music, or some other non-driving activity -- is the number one killer of American teens, according to a host of studies, including thosefrom State Farm Insurance and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. South NassauCommunities Hospital’s Chair of the Department of Pediatrics Dr. Clara E. Mayoral offers tips to parents tohelp teens behind the wheel avoid accidents and injuries that can result.Statistics from a Pew Research survey show just how pervasive the problem is: one in four Americanteens of driving age say they have texted while driving, and half of all teens ages 12 to 17 say they’ve been apassenger while a driver has texted; half of cell-owning teens ages 16-17 say they have talked on a phone whiledriving and 40 percent say they have been in a car when the driver used a cell phone in a way that put them indanger.“Teens seem to have a compelling need to stay connected, wherever they are and whatever they are doing.Young drivers are especially vulnerable because they simply don’t have the driving experience and often thefocus to stay safe,” said Dr. Mayoral. “Driving while distracted is a very hazardous practice that not only canresult in injuries to drivers, but also passengers, other motorists, and pedestrians.” Dr. Mayoral offers thefollowing advice to parents: Ban talking and texting while the car is moving: Parents should be just as adamant on this as they areabout drinking and driving. Lower the volume and eliminate multi-tasking: Teens don’t realize that loud music and otheractivities measurably lower their ability to concentrate and react. Pull over to text or talk: More and more drivers are getting the message that it’s simple and safe topull over to make that call or text. Set a passenger limit: The less activity in the vehicle the better – a simple way to ensure this is toestablish a limit of having only one or two passengers.News From:
  2. 2.  Buckle up for safety: Simple as it is, buckling up should be part of every safety discussion and shouldbe a habit from the very first time behind the wheel.It goes without saying that parents should continue to counsel their children to avoid speeding, drivingrecklessly, and of course, drinking/drugging and driving. Lastly, parents should set an example with their owndriving and should never text or talk with a handheld device.Of course, handheld cell use and texting are illegal in New York and many other states, offering yet anothergood reason to curb those activities. Records from the state Department of Motor Vehicles show that in 2010New York issued almost 332,000 tickets for cell phone use while driving and 3,200 for texting while driving.South Nassau Communities Hospital is one of the region’s largest hospitals, with 435 beds, more than 900physicians and 3,000 employees. Located in Oceanside, NY, the hospital is an acute-care, not-for-profitteaching hospital that provides state-of-the-art care in cardiac, oncologic, orthopedic, bariatric, painmanagement, mental health and emergency services. In addition to its extensive outpatient specialty centers,South Nassau provides emergency and elective angioplasty and is the only hospital on Long Island with theNovalis Tx™ and Gamma Knife® Perfexion radiosurgery technologies. South Nassau is a designated StrokeCenter by the New York State Department of Health and Comprehensive Community Cancer Center by theAmerican College of Surgeons and is recognized as a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence by the AmericanSociety for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. For more information, visit