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Car Wrecks Lead Teen Deaths in Idaho

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By Aimee Burnett

Twin Falls, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV ) Idaho roads are a deadly place for teenagers.

That's according to new information from the state's most recent Vital Statistics Report.

For Twin Falls High School Principal Ben Allen, this time of year is about protecting his students from deadly car accidents.

"We just try to visit with our students and constantly tell them guys we'd rather talk to you than about you," said Principal Allen.

Gem State parents lost sixty–eight sons and daughters under the age of nineteen as a result of motor vehicle crashes between 2009 and 2011.

Several programs are in place at Twin Falls High School to keep students safe.

“Every Fifteen Minutes” is a program designed to educate seniors on the dangers of drinking and driving.

"We're focusing on them because seniors at this time of the year as they're getting ready for graduation. We just want them to be safe and make it to graduation," said Principal Allen.

Driving–related accidents kill more Idaho teens than any other cause and that's something state and city leaders are hoping to change.

"Most of what we deal with is speeding, especially in school zones," said Patrol Officer Justin Hendrickson, Twin Falls Police Department.

That's why officers are cracking down...

That means fewer warnings and more tickets.

"The students that end up getting tickets they end up telling all their friends that they ended up getting a ticket for that. And, that actually helps a lot more on reducing the amount of violations," said Officer Hendrickson.

Principal Allen knows all too well about the dangers students face this time of year.
"A student went to Utah to get ready to work at a camp and he was headed back to graduation practice and fell asleep," said Principal Allen.

Losing a student is something he never wants to experience again.

Officers say the biggest distractions for teens that they see are friends, music, CD players and eating in the cars.

During the last three years teen drivers made up less than six percent of licensed drivers, but seventeen percent of drivers involved in fatal and serious injury, aggressive–driving crashes.

As well as, seventeen percent of the drivers involved in fatal and serious injury, distracted driving crashes.





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