Posts for: February, 2019
Grand Rounds at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston Hospital was very interesting today. Dr. Mark Zonfrillo of Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Hasbro Children's Hospital spoke on Child and Adolescent Road Traffic Safety_a topic dear to the heart of most pediatrician and 21st Century parents and grandparents.
He made some key points, among them were:
1] car restraint systems for children should be used all the time, even short neighborhood trips.
2] apparently fathers are less diligent than mother's in proper and regular use of children car restraint systems/car seats.
3] a car seat should be used until the child exceeds either the height OR weight standards of the individual car seat.
4] car seats that require a TETHER for proper use must use the tether for safety or the child may suffer avoidable injury or fatality otherwide.
5] booster seat use age range can go from 4 years through 10 years of age.
6] children are safest in the back seat of a vehicle and should not ride in the front passenger seat until 13 years of age.
7] car seats with five-point strap restraints are the safest restraint seat, especially facing the rear of the vehicle according to seat specifications.
8] Teen drivers' greatest driving risk is their LACK OF EXPERIENCE, which makes the first 6 months of their driving the period of greatest risk of fatality or injury.
9] the second greatest risk factor for teen drivers are other teen passengers in the vehicle. The risk and the number of crashes increase with increasing numbers of teen passengers in the vehicle with a teen driver. Apparently GA law allows no teen passengers in a vehicle with a teen driver in the first year of driving. In South Carolina, one teen passenger is allowed in the vehicle with a teen driver.
10] GA has a midnight teen curfew for teen drivers.
11] To correct inexperience, teen drivers need a minimum of 30 to 50 hours of SUPERVISED driving by an experienced adult driver.
12] Teens because of their inexperience driving are poor at hazard detection and anticipating or scanning for hazards when driving.
13] Teens have poor insight into the SIGNIFICANCE of their inexperience driving.
14] 16 years is the minimum age in GA for unsupervised teen driving.
15] It takes about 5 sec to do a cell phone text; at 55 MPH, in those 5 seconds, the vehicle will travel the length of a football field. There is increased risk of accident if one's eyes are off the road for greater than two seconds. https://www.itcanwait.com/
It was quite a presentation and very sobering. It reminds me when my daughters were teens, my wife and I had them take a performace driving course at the Atlanta Motor Speedway, https://atlantamotorsportspark.com/teen-driving/. We do what we can! But I really like the idea of 30-50 hours of supervised teen driving by a parent or other experienced adult from the initial point of teen licensing.
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