NC Highway Patrol hosts safe driving program

The North Carolina Highway Patrol is holding "Drive to Live" programs all this week to encourage teen driver safety during prom season. (Anthony Wilson)

April 11, 2011 10:08:55 AM PDT
The North Carolina Highway Patrol is holding "Drive to Live" programs all this week to encourage teen driver safety during prom season.State officials held a news conference Monday at Millbrook High School in Wake County to kick off the initiative.

Authorities say the program is designed to teach teens about the dangers of irresponsible driving and reduce the number of deaths. The Highway Patrol says it has investigated traffic accidents that caused the deaths of 276 teens in the past four years.

"As a parent, it's devastating," Crime Control secretary Rueben Young said. "I have a son who went to the prom this weekend and the message I gave him and his friends was to not drink, not use drugs and to be careful."

Officials also worry about distracted teen drivers.

"Texting and driving are leading to more accidents and casualties on the road than any other form of misbehavior while driving," Wake Schools Superintendent Tony Tata said. "Particularly during the spring season, particularly during the prom season."

Troopers will be conducting traffic safety education programs at high schools around the state and will be around schools to enforce all traffic laws.

"We will be issuing citations to kids and anyone out there who's violating the law," Young said. "We're not doing this to cause a problem for anyone, but we need to enforce the law."

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