Teens, teachers and safety professionals gathered in San Antonio for the Teens in the Driver Seat (TDS) Summit to spread awareness about teen driving dangers. The two-day event in May included presentations, interactive exhibits and an awards luncheon to recognize top-performing TDS schools.
“The war we wage is against the number-one cause of injury and death for young people in our state and nation. We really do so in a unique way with positive peer pressure,” said TDS Director Russell Henk during the opening session. “You that are sitting out there as students, you’re the heart, you’re the pulse of this program, and you’ve become part of the cure.”
Nearly 150 attendees from all over Texas began the conference by listening to State Rep. Justin Rodriguez. Rep. Rodriguez recognized teens for assuming a leadership role and making the roadways safer for all travelers.
Breakout sessions included:
- Who, What, Where, Why, How of Teens in the Driver Seat by Teen Advisory Board students from Jefferson/Silva High School, Creekview High School, Vidal M. Trevino School of Communications and Fine Arts, Chisum High School, Brandeis High School and Bronte High School;
- Cinema Drive 3-D Safe Driving Experience;
- Nickel from Nicole by Jeff LeGrow;
- R.O.L.L. (Respect, Overcome, Lead, Live) by Tyson Dever;
- Teens in the Driver Seat Updates and Future Direction by Russell Henk, P.E., director of Teens in the Driver Seat;
- Not So Fast, A Helpful Teen Driving Safety Guidebook for Parents and Teens by Tim Hollister;
- Distracted Driving, Why Is It So Dangerous? by Christine Yager of the Texas A&M Transportation Institute;
- Commercial Vehicle Issues: Big Rig “No Zones” by Barry Detlefsen of Coastal Transport Company, Inc.; and
- Operation Live Savers by Buck Russel of Union Pacific Railroad.
Interactive exhibits showcased the dangers associated with teen driving. The Big Rig Show Truck taught teens about the “no zones” when it comes to driving around 18-wheelers, the driving simulator demonstrated the effects of driving while distracted, and fatal-vision goggles illustrated the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs.
Kate Huddleston, chief of staff from State Rep. Tom Craddick’s office, spoke to awards luncheon attendees about distracted driving bills that are expected in the upcoming legislative session.
Planning is underway for the 2015 Teens in the Driver Seat Summit. For more information visit http://t-driver.com.