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Round 3 – In the Driver’s Seat

Name: Jenna Abrams
From: Saddle Brook, NJ
Votes: 22087

In the Driver’s Seat

Teens that go through a structured Drivers Education program are safer on the roads and are involved in fewer car crashes, scored higher on the driving exam; and demonstrated greater long-term knowledge over their peers who did not take Drivers Ed. A Drivers Ed course teaches valuable road skills and knowledge of the law and establishes the foundation for lifelong skills. By being able to anticipate the actions of other drivers on the road, drivers can avoid situations that could cause a crash. Drivers learn to position themselves better in traffic, to see traffic differently, position themselves in a way that gives them more time to think and make the right decisions, how to safely operate a vehicle on busy interstates, at night, and during other dangerous driving circumstances, and to develop basic vehicle control and traffic maneuvers. 


Obey the traffic laws, be predictable, avoid distractions, drive rested, and steer clear of alcohol and drugs always. Never think that being on time is worth risking your life and safety and the lives and safety of others. If you think a text message or phone call might be too important to wait, get off the road and bring your car to a complete and safe stop. Make sure your brakes are working properly, your tires are properly inflated, your wipers and defrosters are working, and your mirrors and windows are clean. The better the condition of your vehicle and the position of your body and your mirrors within the car will give you more control when driving. Anticipate the actions of others. Drive only when you are in the sound physical and mental condition these steps will reduce the number of deaths related to driving.

To be a better and safe driver keep a safe distance, minimize all distractions, and focus on driving. Adjust your seat, mirrors, and climate controls before putting the car in gear.  Always keep your attention and eyes on the road. Go the speed limit. During inclement weather, drive at slower speeds to avoid black ice or hydroplaning. Turn your lights on day or night when it is raining or if there is fog. Do not underestimate the amount of stopping distance you need between yourself and the car in front of you. Always insist that all passengers buckle. Wear your seatbelt the right way making sure the lap and shoulder belt is snug and that you are wearing the lap part of the seatbelt on your hips. Fiddling with your radio station or music is extremely distracting while driving, so be sure to set your stations before you start your trip. Use turn signals when maneuvering. ‍Completely stop at stop signs and look for other drivers and pedestrians before you proceed. Expect other drivers to make mistakes. Do not trust anyone but yourself. Err on the side of caution and anticipate problems before you come to them making you a better and safer driver, as well as help others, become safer on the road.