Prevention with anything is always the goal when it comes to dangerous behavior. Drinking and driving has been an issue for decades and no matter how much research is done, people still engage in the behavior. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a list of tips they have found to help prevent drunk driving among teenagers. Learning some of these tips may help prevent your teen from suffering a dangerous Virginia drunk driving accident.
At the state and community level:
- Help get the word out about the dangers and consequences of drinking and driving.
- Ensure enforcement of minimum drinking age laws in retail stores and restaurants, teach the severity of what a zero tolerance policy means, and install the graduated driver’s license program.
At the medical professional level:
- Educate parents and their teenagers about the risks involved with drinking and driving.
- Encourage parents to create a “contract” between parents and their teenager regarding the “rules of the road” and how they pledge to follow them if they want to continue to have driving privileges.
- Remind parents that even though their children are older, they still continue to learn by example. Displaying safe driving habits will teach the teen what is acceptable.
At the parental level:
- Understand that teenage behavior includes indulging. If a teen chooses to drink it will be to get drunk.
- Recognize and remain aware of the dangers of teen drinking and teenagers’ higher propensity to engage in the behavior.
- Teach your teen that they can always call for a ride home no matter what. Allowing them to understand you care more about their safety than you do about punishing them will give them the confidence to call you after drinking instead of getting behind the wheel.
At the teen level:
- Choose to never get behind the wheel and drive a car if you have been drinking.
- Make the safe choice and refuse to get into a car with someone who has been drinking.
- Learn the “rules of the road” and make sure to follow them. They are there for a reason.
- Never try to drive and talk or text on your phone.
- Talk to your parents about the dangers of drinking and driving.
- Set up an agreement with your parents. If you chose to make a bad decision one night and drink, you should have a plan for a safe ride no matter where you are at.
Teenagers have a tendency to take part in all kinds of risky behavior. Sometimes we can help prevent it and sometimes we can’t. If your teen has gotten into trouble with a drunk driving accident, there is help. We are here to offer you guidance and legal assistance. Contact Dulaney, Lauer & Thomas today to see what we can do for you.