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Mark Bello
Mark Bello
Attorney • (877) 377-7848

Bring Them Home…Safely

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Prom season and graduation celebrations are fast approaching for high school students across the nation. While it is a time for celebration, many teens feel that these special events must include alcohol – that it’s a rite of passage.

Statistics confirm that prom and graduation season — the months of April, May and June — is the most dangerous time for teenagers. One-third of the alcohol-related traffic fatalities involving teens each year occur during these months; over 5,000 teens are injured and 48 teens are killed nationwide in car crashes on a typical prom weekend, according to the U. S. Department of Transportation.

What should be a joyful and exciting time should not result in pain, suffering, even death. Amidst all the shopping and preparations leading up to these events, it is critical that parents have some open discussions about the importance of making safe and responsible decisions when it comes to dangerous activities such as drinking, drug use and distracted driving. Research has found that parental advice plays an important role as teens begin a path on their own. They are less likely to get involved in dangerous behavior and are more likely to choose friends who participate in positive behaviors.

  • Know your teen’s itineraries, including whom they will be with and the phone numbers of where you can contact them. Be sure your teenager has a fully charged cellphone.
  • Know your teen’s transportation plans. Make sure your teen has money to cover alternative transportation costs, if necessary.
  • Discuss the dangers of drinking and driving with your teen. No matter how confident a teenager is about his or her abilities, there will be temptations on prom night, at graduation parties and summer gatherings.
  • Instill the importance of wearing a seatbelt, no matter how short the trip and voiding driver distractions such as cell phone use.
  • Know who is supervising all events in which your teen is participating. Don’t give permission to attend parties that will be serving alcohol to minors and remind your teen to never leave any drink unattended.
  • Remind your teen not to feel pressured to take part in inappropriate behavior prior. It’s OK to say no, even if others are participating.
  • Encourage your teen to call you if they ever find themselves in a situation where an intoxicated driver or are too drunk to drive. Let your teen know you would rather a phone call at 2 a.m. than your teen making the decision to be put in a dangerous situation.
  • If you have given your teenager an extended curfew, discuss how fatigue can also cause auto crashes.

What your son or daughter does in the next few months will translate directly into the behavior they take to school in the fall. Help your teen make happy, lasting memories.

Mark Bello is the CEO and General Counsel of Lawsuit Financial Corporation, a pro-justice lawsuit funding company

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  1. Spionage app says:
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    This statistic is so sad =(
    Teen Drivers, Cell Phones, and Texting

    32.8% of high school students nationwide have texted or e-mailed while driving.
    12% of distracted drivers involved in fatal car accidents were teens ages 15 to 19.
    Talking on a cell phone can double the likelihood of an accident and can slow a young driver’s reaction time to that of a 70-year-old.
    Drivers under the age of 20 make up the largest percentage of distracted drivers.
    56% of teens admit to talking on cell phones while driving.
    13% of teens admit to texting while driving.
    34% of teens age 16 and 17 admit that they send and respond to text messages while driving.
    48% of kids ages 12 to 17 report being in a car when the driver was texting.