Young drivers are involved in fatal crashes at more than twice the rate of all others
The Rexburg Police Department joined the National Safety Council and the Colorado State Patrol in their effort to help save our younger drivers in 2009. The Alive at 25 program is a class that has been created for drivers between the ages of 15-24 years old. It focuses on seven areas that have been found to be most deadly for this age group: speed, driving intoxicated, driving tired, having too many passengers in the vehicle, not using a seat belt, too many distractions and following too close. After discussing these topics the class focuses on how these drivers can take control in a car to keep themselves and their friends safe.
At this time, the Rexburg Police Department offers these classes every other month at City Hall. When a driver who fits the age group receives a ticket, the Prosecutor can offer them a class. Parents can also refer their children without having to go through the court system.
Why do we need Alive at 25?
Traffic crashes are the leading cause of teen fatalities, accounting for 44% of teen deaths in the U.S.
- Young drivers are involved in fatal crashes at more than twice the rate of all others
- The first year for a newly licensed teenage driver is the most dangerous, with more than one in five involved in crashes
- Each year nearly 6,000 teens are killed in vehicular accidents; more than 3,800 are drivers aged 15-20
- Annually, more than 326,000 young drivers are seriously injured
- 116 young drivers were killed in Colorado in 2007; 86 (74%) were not wearing safety belts; 56 of these were ejected from the vehicle
- More than half the deaths occurred between Friday and Sunday; 41% occurred between 9:00pm and 6:00am
- Exceeding the posted speed limit or driving at an unsafe speed is the most common error in fatal teenage accidents
- More than 1,000 young drivers lose their lives each year in crashes because of an impaired driver, be it themselves or someone else
- Although this group represents about 7% of the nations’ licensed drivers, they are involved in nearly 15% of all fatal crashes
Research shows the leading cause of young driver accidents involve one or a combination of the following factors:
- Lack of awareness to the consequences of risk-taking behavior
- Inexperience with complexities of driving
- Peers in vehicle with the youthful driver
- Driving as a social activity
- Impaired driving to due road conditions, including driving at night
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
As a young driver or passenger, you can greatly reduce your risk by taking control of the situation. Committing to learning or changing your driving behavior makes personal, legal and financial sense.
What happens during Alive At 25 Courses?
Vehicle crashes are the #1 cause of death for people between the ages of 16 and 24. The National Safety Council, a leader in driver improvement training for more than 40 years, developed DDC-Alive at 25 to specifically target drivers in this age group.
- Since 1995, more than 400,000 young adults have learned life-saving defensive driving skills through DDC-Alive at 25.
- In a study conducted by the Colorado State Patrol in 2003, of 1000 random Alive at 25 graduates (500 voluntary and 500 court ordered), 89% of the respondents indicated they believed they would be a safer driver as a result of taking the class and, 92% of the respondents identified that they believed the class helped them improve their driving knowledge and skills. Please remember, half of the respondents did not want to be there and were court ordered, traffic violators.
- Courts and schools nationwide use DDC-Alive at 25 in their graduated license and violator programs.
This highly interactive program encourages young drivers between the ages of 16 and 24 to take responsibility for their driving behavior. Skill practices and on-the-spot defensive driving techniques help change bravado to confidence.
Our DDC-Alive at 25 instructors use personal examples and even humor to get their point across. They use workbook exercises, interactive media segments, group discussions, role-playing, and short lectures to help young drivers develop convictions and strategies that will keep them safer on the road.
DDC-Alive at 25 teaches young adults that:
- People in their age group are more likely to be hurt or killed in a vehicle crash.
- Inexperience, distractions, and peer pressure cause unique driving hazards.
- Speeding, alcohol, and "party drugs" greatly increase their risk of injury or death.
- As a driver or passenger, they can greatly reduce their risk by taking control.
- Committing to changing their driving behavior makes personal, legal and financial sense.