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California Highway Patrol - Southern Division
Tuesday June 7th, 2016 :: 11:02 a.m. PDT


Casual Conversations With A Teen

Can't You Just Text It To Me?

Let’s be honest, having a casual conversation with your teen about drugs and alcohol, driving or making good choices isn’t the easiest thing to do. If it were, there wouldn’t be hundreds of books, therapists, TV shows, blogs, YouTube videos and psychologists specializing in communicating with teens. Some parents would even go as far as to say that speaking to a teen is akin to talking to an alien. Even though it may seem like your teen isn’t willing to listen, the fact is despite your anxiety, having that conversation can save their life.

The bigger challenge however, is choosing what to talk about. Drugs and alcohol might top the list of what you may want to bring up with your teen, but what do you think is far more dangerous than drugs and alcohol? Reckless and distracted driving.

Not my teen you say? Well, these are the frightening, but sobering, facts of what’s become the #1 killer of teens in America.

• Community in shock after teen dies in crash days before graduation
• Oark High School Senior dies in car accident three days before graduation
• Crestview senior killed in crash days before graduation
• Glendora teen dies in tragic incident days before graduating from high school

Crashes are more common among young drivers than any other age group. In the United States, 1 in 4 crash fatalities involve someone 16 to 24 years old, nearly twice as high as other age groups. (Children's Hospital of Philadelphia)

Child passengers (under age 16) driven by teenagers (ages 16 to 19) have three times the risk of injury in a crash than children driven by adults. Overall, 9 percent of child fatalities occur with a driver under age 19. (Insurance Institute of Highway Safety)

Despite these alarming facts, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about your teen driver. Educating yourself and your teen about the dangers of irresponsible behaviors while driving is the first step.

The CHP, along with the Impact Teen Drivers Program, has resources available to get you involved. The program offers Train-the-Trainers Workshops, School Presentations, Lead-the-Leader Trainings, Parent-Teen Safe Driving Workshops, and Affected Family Trainings.

Seize the moment. Take the opportunity to have that important conversation with your teen about their future. A key part of having a successful conversation with your teen is being able to present resources that are relevant to their lives.

The California Highway Patrol congratulates all of the 2016 graduates. Make it memorable for all the right reasons.

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California Highway Patrol - Southern Division
411 N Central Ave
Glendale, CA 91203

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 818-240-8200

Officer Edgar Figueroa
California Highway Patrol Southern Division PIO Unit

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