Students create videos to prevent dangerous driving

Local News

Some local high school students are driving home the message of being safe while behind the wheel. 

Ten schools in northeast Texas created public service announcements illustrating the impact of dangerous driving. It’s part of an annual competition put on by the Texas Department of Transportation meant to make teens more aware of harmful habits that could have deadly consequences. 

“Speeding, distracted driving, underage drinking, occupant safety – these are all things that we’re losing students from,” said Irene Webster, traffic safety specialist for Texas Department of Transportation’s Atlanta District. 
 
According to the Texas A&M Transportation Institute, car crashes are the number one killer of teens in America, and the Texas Department of Transportation is working to change that. 
 
“Instead of us as adults telling them what not to do, they’re gonna shut us out, and so it’s something that they can share with their friends and maybe make a difference,” said Webster.
 
TxDOT invited area high school students to create three-minute infomercials to raise awareness about things that may seem small, but could be the difference between life and death when behind the wheel.
 
“It made us realize a lot of things that we do that we probably shouldn’t be doing while driving,” said McKinlee Russell, a senior at Queen City High School. 
 
“Letting everyone know, ‘Hey, don’t do that,’ I feel is like one step closer to preventing it,” said Hannah Wales, a Jefferson High School student. 
 
Each of the ten participating schools received $700 dollars for their school’s project celebration, which provides safe, alcohol-free and drug-free events following prom or graduation. The top three videos, as judged by a panel, received a little extra money for their school’s event. But, the real prize is being able to help make the roads a little safer. 
 
“We want to make sure that no more lives are lost in the state of Texas,” said Webster. 
 
Redwater High School took home this year’s top prize for their video about “disappearing teens.” 
 
This is the fifth year TxDOT has held this public service announcement competition. 

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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