Youth Forward Scholarship 2019 – Through Tradgedy comes awareness

Name: Sean Simmons
From: Boston, MA
Grade: 11
School: Henderson K-12
Votes: 0

  • Due
    Feb 15

  • What
    is the importance of driver education in reducing the number of
    deaths as a result of driving?

  • What
    steps can be taken to reduce the number of deaths related to
    driving?

  • Have
    you ever had an experience of being in a car accident or have seen
    your friends or family members driving irresponsibly?

  • What
    steps can you take to be a better and safer driver as well as help
    others become safer on the road

Through
Tragedy Comes Awareness

On
November 25, 2018, my good friend Lucien Theberge, who I met in Boy
Scouts, was killed in a car accident on I-93 in New Hampshire. He was
going slightly over the speed limit and overcorrected and the
accident itself was just like the bus crash from the movie The
Fugitive
but without any train tracks or train. He was 18. I feel
very passionate about this topic due to one of my close friends
becoming part of that awful statistic.

When
it comes to driver education, steps that could be taken to lessen the
number of driving-related deaths are things like, at driving classes,
show the students simulations of what can happen when people disobey
things like speed limits or drive excessively fast in inclement
weather (rain, snow, etc). Driving schools should also teach
control-loss-recovery tactics, as well as how to perceive
other driver’s actions, such as when to stop short, and when to
swerve out of the way. Also driving schools could teach what to do
and/or how to recover from the loss of control. These are very
important things that are not taught in driving schools that I am
aware of, and the lack of this knowledge causes scores of people to
die in preventable car accidents.

To
reduce the number of deaths related to driving, more policies could
be implemented. For example, there could be fewer “strikes” if
you will when it comes to getting your license revoked. Then if
revoked a certain number of times, it can get permanently revoked,
and if you continue driving, criminal offenses would start. That
leads into the next prevention tactic: higher enforcement of traffic
laws on and off the highway. I personally am very impressed with what
the New Hampshire State Police does, using green and minimally marked
squad cars, they position cars in the authorized vehicle crossovers
waiting for speeding vehicles to come up fast to the seemingly
camouflaged police car. Some states have e-toll “portals” that
you drive through and it takes a set fare off your transponder
account. I propose adding a radar gun to these toll portals, so if
you are speeding through them they will send you a speeding ticket
through either your transponder account or the plate owner’s
address. For states without transponder toll systems, a simple radar
gun and rear license plate capture camera on a pole, and could be
subtly and sporadically placed to increase their effectiveness.

To
become a better driver, I feel like I could refine my abilities to
perceive other driver’s movements, as well as being more confident
in myself when I drive. I feel I could also learn some
control-loss-recovery tactics, seeing that I live in the part of the
country where there is snow in the winter. To help others drive
safer, I would be open to teaching people the driving safety tactics
that I’ve learned, and I will make sure to be a good influence on
younger people who may be learning to drive.


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