Friday, May 22, 2015

The National Organizations for Youth Safety is Sponsoring a Spring Seat Belts Save Challenge.

The Spring Seat Belts Save Challenge is a "campaign designed to educate teen drivers about the dangers of riding in a car without wearing a seat belt (in any seat in the car) and increase the number of teens who regularly wear a seat belt in the car."

Click here for more information and to take the challenge

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Developing a Community-Based Car Seat Program

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of injury and death to children in the United States. By developing a community-based car seat program, complete with community partners, we can impact the severity of injuries and reduce the death rates.

By bringing together all stakeholders to discuss motor vehicle crashes, the leading cause of injury and death to children in our community, Safe Kids Larimer County CO was able to develop a comprehensive, coordinated effort using the Community Guide to Preventative Services recommendations. This collaborative effort has helped to address this community’s health needs and address health disparities. Their approach has also helped foster community relationships, prevent burnout of Child Passenger Safety Technicians, and increase their collective impact.

Death rates for children in motor vehicle crashes and injury rates have declined and the number of children properly restrained in car seats has increased since the inception of the program in 2002. Community partnerships/relationships have been strengthened.

In order to impact injury due to motor vehicle crashes there must be a coordinated and comprehensive approach. Safe Kids Larimer County has demonstrated how to work with all entities for the greater good of keeping our kids safe. This program has been successful due to the partnerships built and is being replicated throughout the state.

Safe Kids Larimer County can assist other communities in replicating our success to make an impact on motor vehicle injuries and deaths to children by sharing our resources.

Purchase the full study

Friday, May 1, 2015

Having Mom in the Car Changes Teen Driver's Brain

From: Yahoo News

In a bittersweet rite of passage, each year a new crop of parents buckles up for their teens' first time behind the wheel. Now, a new study suggests that their mother's watchful eye helps teens learn to make safer decisions while driving.

In the study, researchers designed a driving simulation test that actually encouraged risk-taking behavior, and asked 25 teens to complete the simulation as quickly as possible. At each of the 26 intersections in the simulation, the teens had the option to stop for a yellow light, which would cause a three-second delay, or speed through the light — which was the fastest option — if they didn't crash. If they did crash, it caused a six-second delay in their total time. The teens went through the course once each on their own, and once under the gaze of mom.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Teen texting and driving dips with state laws

From: Reuters Health

According to a new analysis of nationwide surveys, teens report less texting while driving in the years following statewide bans. But texting while driving rates are still high, the researchers found.

“We have amazing technology at our fingertips, but it can be destructive,” said senior investigator Dr. Andrew Adesman of Cohen Children's Medical Center in New Hyde Park, New York.

Rates of texting while driving seem to be declining, “which is great,” he told Reuters Health by phone. But, he added, almost a third of teens still report doing it within the previous month.

The researchers used the 2011 and 2013 rounds of the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey, which for the first time included questions about texting and driving over the previous 30 days.

The nationally representative survey of high school students is done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Fourteen states passed laws banning texting while driving between 2011 and 2013. In these states, the self-reported rates of texting and driving decreased from 43 percent to almost 31 percent, down to levels similar to states with bans that had been established for more than five years.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Blocking smartphone use by teen drivers may reduce crash risks

From: Reuters Health

Filming teens while they drive and blocking cell phone signals inside their cars may both help reduce distractions that lead to crashes, a small study suggests.

"We found a large, significant reduction in high-risk driving events like hard braking and sudden swerving," said lead study author Dr. Beth Ebel, director of the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center at the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle.

The number of teen drivers involved in fatal crashes has dropped by more than half over the past decade as safer vehicles hit the road and more young people received restricted licenses, according to a recent U.S. report.

But crashes remain a leading cause of preventable death for U.S. teens, said Ebel, who presented the study findings today at the Pediatric Academic Societies annual meeting in San Diego.

For six months, she and her colleagues followed 29 drivers, ages 15 to 18. Some drove with in-vehicle cameras, some were recorded and also had cell phone signals blocked inside the car, and a third group had no intervention.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Utah gets tougher seat belt law with governor’s signature

From:  St. George News

A bill toughening the state’s seat belt laws for a three-year trial period was signed by Gov. Gary Herbert Monday.

House Bill 79, the Safety Belt Law Amendments, creates a three-year pilot program that makes not wearing a seat belt a primary offense, meaning law enforcement can stop drivers for the offense alone. Before HB 79, not using the seat belt was a secondary offense, meaning the officer had to pull a car over for some other reason first.

Under the pilot program, a driver or a passenger 16 years and older who is not wearing a seat belt can be issued a warning on first offense, and a $45 citation on the second offense. The fine can be waived by taking a 30-minute course approved by the Utah Department of Safety.

After the trial period, the pilot program will sunset and seat belt offenses from July 1, 2018, and following may only be brought against anyone 19 or older and only then if they are pulled over for a violation other than failure to wear a seat belt.