Minnesota Toward Zero Death Workshop Visits Bemidji
Getting your drivers license and hitting the road is a thrill for most teens, but unfortunately that new found freedom usually leads to poor driving decisions. Each year hundreds of young Minnesotans die and thousands more get injured in traffic related incidents. That’s why traffic officials gathered today for the Toward Zero Deaths workshop to discuss ways to reduce fatalities and serious injuries on Minnesota roadways.
One speaker, Matt Logan, lost his teenage daughter D.J. Logan, after a poor decision behind the wheel led to a fatal crash with a school bus. Logan said, “D.J. mad a decision to use her phone. She chose to text. She couldn’t wait that few minutes it took to get home, and she paid for that with the highest price imaginable.”
Now, new dash cam technology can help discourage teens from making poor decisions like texting while driving. The drive cam reduces risky driving behaviors up to 70% and it emails parents when their child makes a risky move behind the wheel.
Officials also recommend buckling up, turning down the music, and putting your cell phone away before hitting the road. Holly Kostrzewksi, the Northwest Minnesota Toward Zero Death coordinator, said, “We each take it home to our families so we can help change behavior.” She continued, “Buckle up, don’t text, don’t drive impaired. Once these behaviors change, then we’ll see a reduction in deaths.”
And these traffic officials say that not just teens, but parents also play a role in reducing those deaths. Parents need to understand that drivers education only supplements what they teach at home. Only that will make sure that everyone understands that decisions made behind the wheel can make a difference between life or death.