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SADD team member workshop. Part I: What and Why?. WHAT YOU’LL LEARN. Crashes are not accidents, they have causes and most are preventable. Crashes are the No. 1 cause of death for adolescents. The whole school should be involved to help solve this complex problem.

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SADD team member workshop

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SADD team member workshop

Part I: What and Why?


  • Crashes are not accidents, they have causes and most are preventable.

  • Crashes are the No. 1 cause of death for adolescents.

  • The whole school should be involved to help solve this complex problem.

  • You can make a difference—and it’s simpler than you may think.

  • The heart of Ride Like a Friend is teens talking to teens.

5,000 reasons to get involved

  • That’s how many teen lives are lost in crashes each year

  • SADD has led the way, putting the focus on teen’s destructive decisions behind the wheel.

  • It is time to take even more action

Source: NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts, August 2008

A Cause, a solution

35%Motor Vehicle

  • A car “crash” is not an “accident.”

  • A crash has a cause or set of causes.

  • A cause could be distracting passengers, cell phones (text or call), speeding and driving inexperience.

    By understanding the cause, we can do something to prevent crashes!

37%All Other



Leading Causes of Death for Teens

What causes can combine in fatal teen car crashes?*

Alcohol?Less than 20%(SADD, your work has

made a difference.)

The top cause of fatal teen crashes is driver error:


Speeding?About 40%

  • * Among 16- to 17- year-old drivers Source: Williams, et al, Journal of Public Health Policy, 16:3 (1995)

Distractions and Inexperience Are Major Factors in Driver Errora big distraction? passengers

Passengers are a major factor leading to fatal teen crashes

  • One peer passenger doubles the risk of a fatal crash

  • Three or more passengers raises fatal crash risk four to five times

  • Source: Chen L, et al. Journal of the American Medical Association (2000)

The more passengers, the worse the danger.Why?

Relative Crash Risk

Chen, LH, Baker, SP, Braver, ER & Li, G JAMA (2000).

What makes passengers dangerous?

Teens surveyed said they don’t want passengers to:

  • Act wild

  • Encourage speeding

  • Be intoxicated

  • Sing or dance

teens told us

Safe driving behaviors you would use include:

  • wearing seat belts

  • establishing safe driver-passenger interaction

  • reducing driver distractions

  • asking for help as drivers

  • turning down radio volume

    RLAF builds on this!

Someday you will drive your friends

  • RLAF recognizes and supports passenger limits:

    • during the first 6 month or 1,000 miles of driving

    • in keeping with Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) laws

  • Eventually you will be in full control of your car, your rules rules and the number of passengers

    Safe passenger behavior will pay off today and down the road.

Messages for drivers

If they’re your friends, they should help.

  • Set your rules.

  • Ask for help.

  • Expect respect.

Messages for passengers

If you’re their friend, you should care.

  • Buckle up.

  • Be there to help (give directions, answer cell phones, etc.)

  • Show respect.

So we can be friends and save lives. How do we get started?

  • Keep it positive

  • Remember the science (stay on message)

  • Get everyone involved

  • Create a campaign that works in your school

Stay positive--research shows:

Positive messages lead tolong-term change

Scare tactics lead tofear and short-term change

Sources: Hale J, et al., Designing Health Messages, Sage (1995) Witte, K. et al., The Handbook of Communication and Emotion (1998)

Remember the science

  • Teen car crashes are the No. 1 cause of death for adolescents

  • Car crashes are not accidents and most are preventable

  • The top cause of fatal teen crashes? 75% are caused by Driver Error

  • RLAF has been tested by teens and it works

Get everyone involved

  • Passengers and drivers

  • School and community members

  • Parents and other adults

    Make sure activities

    you plan are engaging

    and accessible to all!

Be creative: make a campaign that works in your school

  • Select materials that will be well received

  • Scale up or down to your resources!

  • Tie the campaign to popular events at your high school

    • Homecoming Game

    • Assembly

    • Spirit Week

    • Sports Booster Event (car wash, dance, fund raiser

Available courtesyof the Research and Outreach Alliance of:

Young Driver Research Initiative (YDRI)

Next UP

Getting It Started

Young Driver Research Initiative(YDRI)

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