Jul 22, 2014 12:43 AM by Jason Atcho
Teen drivers in the Chico area today got a chance to participate in an interactive safe driving course. The Start Smart program is for drivers 15 to 19 year old and their parents. It illustrates how bad choices can affect more than just their own lives.
Distracted driving is one of the topics that's covered in the program. With the convenience of cell phones, many teen drivers are on their phones checking Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, or texting. One teen we spoke to says she'll have her phone on while driving but only use it for an emergency. "I would always have my phone on me in case of that or a family emergency, but I would never ever look at my phone and drive because it takes just 2 seconds to get into an accident," explained Payten Agee, a 18 year old from Chico who attended the training.
CHP Officer Adriana Warner added "teen drivers are statistically going to be involved in more traffic collisions because they're inexperienced. They're new drivers. They haven't been out there very long and haven't seen everything that's out on the road."
CHP officers also focus on drinking and driving. They say in the last 6 months in the Chico area, they've had 40 DUI traffic collisions. During the program they show the teens a graphic video called "Red Asphalt" that shows real stories of teens getting into accidents and how their lives have changed.
The CHP office in Chico hopes to hold monthly trainings in the next few months. If you're interested in registering, you can call 879-1926.