Why So Many Teen Driving Deaths?

Why are motor vehicle crashes the number one national cause of deaths among teenagers, claiming the lives of six teens aged 16-19 every day? (Center of Disease Control and Prevention {CDV} Motor Vehicle Safety). In 2017, 3,255 teens were involved in fatal crashes (NHTSA Teen Distracted Data). A drastic need for change is revealed by realizing that in 2001’s 9-11 attacks 2,996 people were killed. Half of all teens will be involved in a vehicle crash before graduating from high school (National Safety Council)! According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, a 16-year-old is 20 times more likely to be killed than an adult. Why are there so many teenage deaths? One reason is there are less driver education programs in our public schools. Another is that teens in SC and many other states can get their driver’s license at age 17 without driver education (public) or driver training (private). Such reasons are why only half of the teens take driver education or driver training (Nebraska Safety Council). There needs to be education for good teenage driving rather than just a phased-in licensing period. Teens need to be taught proper skills and attitudes (Driving Skills for Life). Better educated teens will make our roadways safer.

Why are SC legislators using a proviso to waive the law that driver education must be offered in high schools? Such limits families with low income to have reasonably priced public-school driver education, and hinders them from having to pay high prices of $300-500 or more for private driver training. This causes teens to wait until 17 without such education to get a driver’s license. The driving risks are extreme, and the crash rate is predictably the highest within the first three months after getting their driver’s license. They are eight times more likely to be involved in a crash (or near miss) at this age (2018 National Institute of Health study). Driving constitutes the greatest hazard to survival through which American youth must pass successfully to reach adulthood.

Why should we be so concerned about teens not taking driver education or driver training? A teen is almost ten times more likely to get into a crash the first year on the road (Teen-Driving- Straight-Facts). Teen drivers, per mile driven, have crash rates four times those of drivers 20 and older (Insurance Institute of Highway Safety). Every day six teens aged 16-19 die in crashes (Center for Disease Control and Prevention). Every 12 minutes someone dies in a car crash and every 10 seconds someone is injured and taken to an emergency department (National Center for Injury Prevention and Control). Teen drivers have a higher rate of fatal crashes mainly because of their immaturity, lack of skills and lack of experience (NHTSA). There are things that can be done to make teenage drivers safer. It starts by providing better driver and traffic safety education for teenagers. Driver Education/Driver Training is important to educate teenagers in vehicle and road safety before they get a driver’s license. Such will help our youth to live to become the leaders of tomorrow. We know that reading, writing and arithmetic are important; however, what good are they if teenagers do not know the physics of a vehicle and end up killing themselves? It can be argued that driving is the most important skill in contemporary society, insofar as the threat to human life is concerned. No doubt it is too important to learn by chance in a haphazard way (Automotive Safety Foundation and the Highway Users Federation). Raise the age for SC teenagers to 18 or 19 for them to get a driver’s license without taking driver education/driver training. This would encourage teens to take driver education/driver training. Also, waive the SC proviso so all SC high schools must offer at least one class of driver education. 

May we as South Carolinians encourage South Carolina to do her part to require that teenagers take driver education/driver training so our teenagers can do their part in making traffic safety first and making traffic safety last!

Joe Sabbadino
Driver Educator
President, SCDTSEA

Dr. Harry Carl Stille, Jr.

Dear Colleagues,

Our beloved Dr. Harry Stille died yesterday morning. He still lives, but not with us. All of the arrangements are not available yet, but you could get on the internet for Harris Funeral Home in Abbeville for additional information. If you want to send sympathy cards to Mrs. Harry Stille, it is: Reba Stille, 5 Bernice Brown Lane, Due West, SC 29639. She will be getting the best Indoor Garden Basket today from SCDTSEA. The message: “Deepest sympathy from friends and colleagues of the South Carolina Driver and Traffic Safety Education Association. Harry meant so much to all. Joe Sabbadino, President, SCDTSEA.”

As much as we do not like the thought, we are born to die but to also live again after death (Ecclesiastes 3:1, 2). At this solemn time, it may be fitting to end with some quotations on death. This quotation by Christian F. Geilert is true about Harry — “Live as you will have wished to have lived when you are dying.” Death is the great key that opens the place of Eternity. –John Milton. Death is not a period but a comma in the story of life. –A. J.Traver. Death is the gate of life. –St. Bernard of Clairvaux. You are not ready to live until you are ready to die. –Pastor Norman Eoute. Death is but life to a true believer; it is not his last day, nor his worst day, but in the highest sense his best day, and the beginning of his better life. Voltaire said, “I hate life, and yet I hate to die.” Paul said, “For me to live is Christ, to die is gain.” Dying men have said, “I am sorry I have been an atheist, an infidel, an agnostic, a skeptic, or a sinner”; but no man ever said with his last breath, “I am sorry I have lived a Christian life.” –Dr. Bob Jones, Sr. Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from hencefort…that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them. –Revelation 14:13. Life with Christ is an endless hope; life without Christ is a hopeless end. Take care of your life and he Lord will take care of your death. –George Whitefield.

There are so many wonderful things to remember about Dr. Harry Stillle. I know that those of us who knew him are thankful that we were “touched” by him.

Sincerely,
Joe

Joe Sabbadino
President, SCDTSEA

Dr. Harry Carl Stille, Jr. Obituary

2019 SCDTSEA Conference Highlights

Previous Image
Next Image

info heading

info content

2018 SCDTSEA Award Winners
AwardWinner
Commercial School of the YearAlert Driver Training, Alan Beckley

SLED Chief Traffic Safety Officer of the YearMark Keel, accepted by Terry Taylor SCDMV

Driver Education Teacher of the YearRobert Suggs, West Florence High School

SCDTSEA AwardJerry Lloyd, Secretary

Award of AppreciationSherry Bachmann, Precious Cargo Driving School

Commercial Teacher of the YearSusan Baldwin, Baldwin Driver Training

Poster Contest
1st place: Claire Swartz, Sabbadino Driving School
2nd place: Noelani Gamble, Lower Richland High School
3rd place: Zyoria Adams A&R Driving School
Honorable Mention: Barry Fogle A&R Driving School






Rail Safety Week

Distractions while driving can be deadly. Watch Kailynn’s mother tell her heartbreaking story.

#RailSafetyWeek #STOPTrackTragedies #SeeTrack?ThinkTrain!

2019 SCDTSEA Conference Details

Dear DTSE Colleagues,

I am already excited as the speakers have been finlized to be the best ever. Chief Mark Keel, SLED, will speak on “Medical Marijuana Bill: A Poisnous Apple”; Clemson’s Professor Terecia Wilson will speak on the new Masters in Traffic Safety Administration and on drowsy driving; Corporal Bill Rhyne will speak and L/Cp Joe Hovis will share the national winning performance given on “The Legacy”: Director John Westerhold will share some information about his Office of Highway Safety and Justice Programs; and, if the above isn’t enough, Andy Pilgrim will be with us again!! Actually, I wanted to also have a time of input from accomplished educators regading both driver education classroom and BTW, as well as commercial driver training classroom and BTW. I am so sorry that such will not be for this year.

This year we cannot get into the SCDMV building at Blythewood until 8:30 a.m. (the past few years we were able to get in at 7:30). A SPECIAL REQUEST: please plan to be at the SCDMV at 8:30 to start a shorter registration time. This will help to keep our conference program schedule on time. The program will be starting at 9 a.m.

Our president, Andrew Johnson, wanted to add another incentive for you to come and bring other colleagues to our conference. He got ADTSEA to donate two of their Driver Eduation/Training Curriculum guides to SCDTSEA. Invite and keep a list of colleagues you invite and actually come to attend December 6. I just checked ADTSEA’s website and each education/training curriculum guide costs $175. It includes two DVDs, one hard copy curriculum and one copy of AAA’s How To Drive. Two colleagues who are responsible for having the most colleagues attend the conference will each receive one of the two ADTSEA’s Driver Education/Training Curriculum Guides. Strive to be one of the two winners!!

Click here to download the conference registration and SCDTSEA membership forms

You all know that I like to share things and not much room now. I have always enjoyed compiling quotations so I will end with a few from a past mentor of mine regarding driver and traffic safety education:

“Driving is like baseball. It’s the number of times you reach home safely that counts.”

—Captain Billy Fallaw

“There’s many a nut (about 2000) on an automobile but the biggest nut handles the steering wheel.”

—Captain Billy Fallaw

“A tip for young drivers: ‘FORGET THE GIRL AND HUG THE ROAD.'”

—Captain Billy Fallaw

“Men still die with their boots on, but one is usually on the accelerator.”

—Captain Billy Fallaw

Let’s plant a “Safety Garden”:
    plant a row of peas—Patience
    plant a row of squash—Speed
    plant a row of lettuce—Let us obey all rules and regulations
    plant a row of turnips—Turn up alive

Looking foward to seeing many of you on December 6, 2019. May you keep taking steps for safety!

Joe Sabbadino
President-Elect
SCDTSEA

2018 SCDTSEA Conference Highlights

Previous Image
Next Image

info heading

info content

2018 SCDTSEA Award Winners
AwardWinner
ADTSEA Curriculum Winner
Commercial Teacher of the YearTina Dodd, Drive Alert Academy

 

Commercial School of the YearMr. Mike’s Driving School

 

Traffic Safety Officer of the YearLance Corporal Joe Hovis, SCHP

 

Driver Education Teacher of the YearDonald Addis, Whitmire Highschool

 

Award of AppreviationColonel Kevin Shwedo, Director of SCDMV

 

Award of AppreviationJulie Sabbadino

 

Award of AppreviationLester Johnson

 

Friend of SCDTSEARick Todd, SCTA

 

Outstanding Leadership AwardRichard Chidester, AAA

 

SCDTSEA AwardJanice Cowen

 

Poster Contest

Update 2019 SCDTSEA Conference

Dear Driver & Traffic Safety Specialists,

I know you would want the latest information for the 2019 SCDTSEA Conference. It will be December 6 at Blythewood’s SCDMV. Hope you will make plans to attend. This year the officers cannot get into the building until 8:30 Friday morning so the conference will start later than in the past. So far committed speakers are the following:

  • Bill Rhyne, SCDPS Speaker
  • Office of Highway Safety & Justice Programs, John Westerhold, Director
  • Terecia Wilson, past DOT and current professor at Clemson University

Two other speakers that have been invited include Andy Pilgrim of the Traffic Safety Education Foundation and SLED Chief Mark Keel. 

Pray for Dr. Harry Stille. He just got home from life-threatening surgeries and is in the process of recuperating. I know an encouraging card would be appreciated (P. O. Box 203, Due West, SC 29639). 

The DUI-E proposal is getting closer to becoming law. Continue to support this! One SCDTSEA proposal that I hope will be considered is having a city/county/state ordinance that limbs/branches hiding traffic signs and creating blind spots for motorists should be removed. Perhaps a warning for the property owner to do such in a certain amount of time or the city/county/state could do so if not done

My seeing the DWI poster board that one just blew $10,000 for the first offense got me wondering how much it really is. I also felt that teens would simply think such a sign is a “scare tactic” and not reality. At any rate I did some research and prepared a handout for my students regarding the average costs for the first offense (without a crash). You may want to use such. Oh, remember the drinking and driving poster contest for your 2019 students (info given earlier and on our website).

Professionalism is striving for quality in all that we do.  I will close with a few quotations:

“Put your heart into your work, and the quality of your work will put heart into you.”
“Quality — there are no small mistakes.  If it’s wrong, it’s wrong.”
“It’s one thing to work for a living; it’s another thing to work for a cause.”  –Dr. Bob Jones.
“The work in life is learning to be excited about your work.”  –Charles F. Jones.

Best regards,

Joe
Joe Sabbadino
President-Elect
SCDTSEA

Letter from President Elect Regarding the November 30 SCDTSEA Conference

Dear Driver & Traffic Safety Education Colleagues,

The SCDTSEA Conference’s theme is Safety First. Click here to download the conference information, along with conference/membership forms and the safety poster contest.

A message from SCDTSEA President Andrew Johnson:
“Members of SCDTSEA who recruit a new member, and both attend our upcoming conference, will be eligible to participate in a drawing to win a complete Driver Training
Curriculum from ADTSEA, with DVDs, etc.”

As always, the conference attendance bags will be full of very helpful teaching information. The ones at the last conference will remember Andy Pilgrim’s presentation about working on an “Awareness Driving Techniques For Today” DVD. It is complete and one will be in each attendee’s conference bag. I have looked at it and feel it is the best Defensive Driving teaching tool since the father of defensive driving prepared “Smith System of Space Cushion Driving”!!

It is always a “shot in the arm” to attend a professional conference geared to help the professionals. SCDTSEA has sought to be that way since the founding of it.

I seem to be known for writing long letters/emails. I will close with something that I worked up while in a class with Dr. Charles McDaniel about professionalism:

Professionalism isn’t simply having high degrees — it’s being of a higher breed;
It isn’t simply teaching for years — it’s teaching for quality;
It isn’t haughty pride — it’s humbling service;
It isn’t talk — it’s action; and
It isn’t promises — it’s performances.

 

Yours for Safety,

Joe

Joe Sabbadino
President-Elect
SCDTSEA

Looking Ahead to the 2018 SCDTSEA Conference

Dear Colleagues,

We are working to have the November 30, 2018 SCDTSEA Conference at Blythewood’s SCDMV as good as can be. Registration/membership forms will be emailed to you in August or September, but I hope you will now reserve that date for the conference! One thing that we did want to attach for you is the poster contest information. It was sent out in January, but you may have lost the information. One new addition to this is, the teacher of the 1st winner will get $50 and a plaque. I hope that you can get some of your students to do safety posters for this contest and the top three will be rewarded with cash prizes.

Thank you for supporting the DUI-E bill. Although action was not taken this year, Representative Bill Taylor will present it again next year. If you are interested in making contact, his email is Bill@TaylorSCHouse.com. In regards to this subject, a most helpful PA for your teaching would be found by going to the internet and typing in “Your Last Text Texting While Driving.”

You may want to get on the mailing list of a few places that I consider very helpful in my teaching. One is getting the daily fatality reports in SC. You can make such a request to Beth Lancaster, SC Dept. of Public Safety, at BethLancaster@SCDPS.Gov. Another very helpful resource is receiving the SC Insurance Association’s daily reports. You can make such a request by going to www.SCinsurance.net.

Some of you have found it most helpful to have a guest speaker from the SC Department of Public Safety. In my area, Joe Hovis does a great job. I had him speak last week. His email is JoelHovis@scdps.gov.

I am in the Greenville area. If you are a long ways from here, contact Bill Rhyne and he can let you know who to contact for your area. Bill’s email is WilliamRhyne@scdps.gov. By the way, Bill will be one of the conference speakers and I have asked him to give a presentation like they would if it was at your school. Nothing complements our teaching and makes even more of a difference with the young people! In mentioning a guest speaker, I have been corresponding with Kim Conyers at State Farm and they would love to have a one of their people speak at your school talking about insurance. If that is an interest, email her at Kim.conyers.gpqc@statefarm.com.

May some of the above be helpful. I have felt that we all need more help in giving the best BTW instruction for the short time that we have. It was a concern of mine when taking courses to prepare for teaching driver and traffic safety education. I attended several universities in preparing to teach driver education/driver training (Univ of SC, Univ of GA, Texas A & M, and got my Masters in Driver and Traffic Safety Education Safety Education at Appalachian State University), but felt I still needed better training for the BTW. A speaker or two at the SCDTSEA Conference will give some great tips to help us provide better BTW instruction. For now, I will share some tips from how I teach BTW. The best way to teach student skills is to start with simple before complex maneuvers. Don’t be guilty of starting with parallel parking and working with students on it for hours!! I start off-road to help students get used to the vehicle, starting, stopping, smooth stops, turning and judgment stops. I may be the only one who tries to have two students in the vehicle so there can also be good learning from observation (required for high school driver education courses). This helps for faster learning — of course, observation time does not count as in-car time. Then I start on-road with tracking and then scanning (defensive driving procedures). By the way, I have pre-planned routes for every type of driving. Next I select a few good blocks to practice right and left turns, curb parks and 3-Pt turns. Now I feel the students are ready for freeway, city and mountain driving. Finally, I do the most complexed maneuver of parallel parking since the students now would have the best judgment, speed control, etc. After that, I will have them drive to practice what would be on the license test. With detailed planning like this, often I have students that still have more driving time to complete the six hours of BTW! Try this procedure if you aren’t and you will find that it will make a big difference!

Some of you are also coaches. A few driving quotations relating to what you also do:

In football a safety means two points.  In driving safety means your life. — Captain Billy Fallaw.

In basketball your goal is to score and in driving your goal is to arrive alive. — Donny Harrison.

Driving is like baseball.  It’s the number of times you reach home safely that counts.

Best regards,

Joe

Joe Sabbadino

President-Elect

SCDTSEA