Free Txt U L8R Program at UVM Medical Center, Oct. 16
September 13, 2017
October 15-21st is National Teen Driver Safety Week. To promote teen driver safety, UVM Medical Center is offering the Txt U L8R program to students and their families. Everyone is encouraged to participate!
Texting while driving has quickly become one of the greatest hazards on the road. It causes 1.6 million car crashes and 330,000 injuries per year, and approximately seven teen deaths every single day. That’s why the UVM Medical Center and the Clinical Simulation Laboratory at the UVM College of Medicine created “TXT U L8R” a unique program designed to discourage individuals from texting while driving.
Key elements include a demonstration of an advanced driving simulator, presentation of a realistic trauma scenario, a testimonial from the victim of an accident caused by a teen driver who was texting, and a demonstration of several smartphone apps designed to prevent texting while driving.
The TXT U L8R event is Monday, October 16th, 6pm-7:30pm at UVM Medical Center, UVM Medical Education Pavilion, Sullivan Classroom. Register at: https://www.uvmhealth.org/medcenter/Pages/ENRS/EventsCartRegistration.aspx?OccurrenceId=1451 Funding is available to assist with transportation costs. Contact Christina Keating, Christina.Keating@UVMHealth.org
Christian Franchino Joins YSCVT Team
August 24, 2017
The YSCVT welcomes Christian Franchino to our staff as an intern from Champlain College. Christian is working toward a Bachelor of Broadcast and Streaming Media degree and joins us with videography and audio editing skills. Our outreach efforts will improve as Christian updates our driver educator contacts and begins producing content for social media and television. He’ll also bring important skills to the audio-visual messages of the Aftermath project. Thanks for being on the team, Christian!
New Web Site Helps VT Schools Host Safety Fairs; Grant Program Offered
July 22, 2017
BURLINGTON: July 24, 2017 The Youth Safety Council of Vermont in collaboration with Mt. Abraham Union High School has published a how-to guide for Vermont high schools that describes how Mt. Abe produced a campus-wide safety fair: http://www.yscvt.org/safetyfairs/
On Friday, May 5 Mt. Abraham Union High School hosted presentations by numerous organizations, creating a day-long, campus-wide event with a ‘personal safety’ theme for 400 students in grades 9-12. The fair, developed through the school year by faculty and students in partnership with the Youth Safety Council of Vermont, showcased safety knowledge from across the state.
The safety fair presented more than 25 workshops, presentations and speakers indoors and out. Participants in the fair included the Vermont State Police presenting forensic crash reconstruction techniques; a motorcycle simulator shared by Ride Safe VT, and Sharon Huntley speaking about the tragic loss of her teen son, Spencer, in a distraction-related crash. The Youth Safety Council presented ‘Turn Off Texting,’ with students driving a golf cart while texting to learn first-hand how dangerous distracted driving can be. Many organizations including the Vermont Department of Health, UVM Medical Center, Alive at 25, Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department, AAA Northern New England, AT&T, WomenSafe, Fire Pro Tec, Bristol Rescue, Bristol Police, and others presented information and interacted with students. A mock crash was the central educational experience of the fair, presented by the Mt. Abraham students in conjunction with Bristol Fire, Police and Rescue Departments.
With the assistance of Heritage Toyota, faculty, students and volunteers helped document the event to create the new online reference guide. The new guide is intended to help other Vermont high schools produce similar safety fairs with confidence and easy access to many freely available safety programs.
Heritage Toyota has also created a grant program to encourage Vermont schools to produce their own safety fairs. For any schools who would like to offer a safety fair in the 2017-2018 academic year, Heritage Toyota is proud to offer a $250 grant incentive. The purpose of the grant is to fund the efforts of the schools to plan an educational event focused on teen driving safety. Interested schools can visit www.heritagevt.com/donation-requests to fill out the form and start the process. Bethany Sargent, Marketing Manager of Heritage Automotive Group said, “We are so proud to help schools bring important safety information to their students. Being committed to our communities means being committed to the health and well-being of our next generation of drivers. We feel fortunate to be able to get involved and support schools with this endeavor.”
Sharon Koller, Student Assistance Program Counselor at Mt. Abraham and advisor to the student “VTLSP” club (Vermont Teen Leadership Safety Program), facilitated the event planning. James Lockridge, Executive Director of the Youth Safety Council of Vermont, said, “Mt. Abraham has contributed energy and wisdom to help schools across Vermont guide their students toward safe decision-making, behind the wheel and in their daily lives. The school and community came together like champions to create this new empowering resource. The experience makes us proud to serve such a caring and proactive state.”
The project was inspired by the work of the Vermont Highway Safety Alliance (VHSA), a non-profit organization that brings together highway safety stakeholders from all over Vermont, including state agencies and law enforcement as well as federal partners, insurance companies, and nonprofit organizations, vermonthighwaysafety.org. Glen Button, Chair of the VHSA, said, “This initiative clearly shows the positive results from the collaboration amongst our many highway safety partners. The all-day safety fair at Mount Abraham High School was a great success and has set the standard for all Vermont high schools to achieve. The how-to-guide will help schools meet this goal.”
Contact: James Lockridge, firstname.lastname@example.org, (802) 881-9050
About Mt. Abraham Union High School: Mt. Abraham is a Grades 7-12 public middle/high school in the village of Bristol, serving the Five Town district of Bristol, Lincoln, Monkton, New Haven, and Starksboro. Mt. Abraham is part of the Addison Northeast Supervisory Union (ANESU) and works to create and maintain a stimulating and respectful environment in which all are engaged, all pursue and promote learning, and all participate as active, responsible citizens. mtabevt.org/
About the Youth Safety Council of VT: The YSCVT uses golf carts and an advanced driving simulator to demonstrate the dangers of distraction to Vermont’s student drivers. With support from the Governor’s Highway Safety Program and sponsors, the ‘Turn Off Texting’ program is free to high schools and community groups statewide. yscvt.org
About Heritage Toyota: As part of the Heritage Automotive Group, Heritage Toyota has been a part of the Vermont community since 1994. Known for Toyota sales and service, Heritage Toyota is committed to creating the best quality customer experience as well as contributing to the health, safety and success of the communities in which they do business. HeritageToyotaCars.com
Photo: A mock crash at the Mt. Abraham UHS safety fair. Photo by Leeya Tudek.
A South African Message About the Dangers of Texting While…
July 17, 2017
Driving Behavior is Learned at Home: A PSA from The Windham County Sheriff Office, Enhanced Teen Driver Safety Program
July 6, 2017
Free Advanced Driving Skills Class for Teens in Essex Jct.!
June 27, 2017
Join Ford Driving Skills for Life’s Summer Tour in Essex Junction for advanced drivers training for teens. Training will help teens improve their skills in hazard recognition, vehicle handling, speed and space management, braking and stopping distances, reaction time and how to avoid the dangers of distracted and impaired driving. This course is intended for teens to learn these skills in a safe environment with professional instructors sitting right next to them. There is no-cost to attend this event. Space is limited, so register today for July 19 OR 20th, morning OR afternoon.
TOT at Champlain Valley Union High School
June 26, 2017
YSCVT Presenter Paul Burroughs brought the Turn Off Texting demonstration to Richard Ritter’s driver education class at Champlain Valley Union High School in Hinesburg today. Here’s photos!
Heritage Toyota’s 5-Part High School Safety Fair Video Series Launches!
June 8, 2017
Words & Video by Heritage Toyota.
“On May 5, 2017, Heritage Toyota was proud to partner with Mount Abraham Union High School for their day-long Safety Fair. Students helped plan and prepare for months to host a fair with a wide range of safety topics, including driver safety.
These are the first videos of a 5-part series exploring the role of safety in the community, and why it’s essential to teach children how to be safe. The Mount Abe Safety Fair was made possible with a grant from Co-operative Insurance Companies and other community support from Bristol Fire Department, Bristol Police Department, Middlebury Regional Emergency & Medical Services, Inc, Vermont Highway Safety Alliance and the Governor’s Highway Safety Program as well as many community faculty and parents. Our thanks go out to everyone who helped to make this important day possible.”
Free Advanced Driving Skills Class for Teens Presented by Ford in Essex Jct.
June 8, 2017
The free Ford Driving Skills for Life advanced driver education course for teens is touring to Vermont! A limited number of registrations will be accepted at https://www.drivingskillsforlife.com/events-cat/events/state/VT
Register to learn skills that aren’t taught in regular driver education classes — take a next step in skills building as a new driver!
‘Thanks!’ From Mt. Abraham Union High School for Successful Safety Fair!
May 10, 2017
On a grey Friday, Mt Abraham Union High School hosted an inaugural Safety Fair in collaboration with the Youth Safety Council of Vermont and many area volunteers and organizations. The day began with a “Mock Crash” organized by students in the Mt Abe Vermont Teen Leadership Safety Program (VTLSP). As part of their year long effort to increase health and safety awareness among their peers, these students planned the event which brought student actors, members of the Bristol Fire, Rescue and Police Departments and the Middlebury Rescue Department together to stage a simulated crash scene caused by distracted driving.
As the high school students and teachers looked on, emergency responders arrived on the scene, securing the vehicles and addressing the staged medical needs of the students. A narrator explained the process and the likely outcome for the driver who caused the crash with his distracted driving. Attorney General TJ Donovan was on hand and shared a strong message urging students to take their own and others’ safety to heart. Automobile crashes are the leading cause of death for teens. Through this dramatization, VTLSP and the emergency responders hoped to highlight the real and tragic results of distracted and impaired driving to encourage students to use safer driving practices.
After the Mock Crash, high school students moved on to a full day of safety related workshops as part of the May 5th Safety Fair. Volunteer presenters offered over 25 different workshops covering topics from Tire Safety and Emergency Kits to Drugs 101 which taught students the effects of various drugs on driving skills, and from Healthy Relationships to Ending Distracted Driving. The Safety Fair was the result of a months-long collaboration of MAUHS students and teachers, the Youth Safety Council of Vermont, community members, businesses, and safety experts from around Vermont. The goal was to offer students a day filled with opportunities to think about and learn about personal safety on the road and in many other aspects of their lives. With the help of a generous donation by Co-Operative Insurance, the school was able to offer scholarships for students to complete CPR certification, provide lunch for the guest presenters, and identify student volunteers with bright Safety Day t-shirts.
While the day began with a somber reminder of the risks of distracted driving, students ended the day with a festive reminder of how much their community cares about them. Thanks to donations from local businesses and individuals as well as AT&T, the final send-off of the day was an assembly where Principal Jess Barewitz reminded students to keep themselves and each other safe because, “You are loved,” followed by raffle-style giveaways to those who participated in the day.
Many thanks to everyone who made this Safety Fair possible, including Attorney General TJ Donovan, Co-Operative Insurance, Buy Again Alley, Green Mountain Shoe and Apparel, Bristol Fire, Rescue and Police, Middlebury Rescue, AT&T, Heritage Ford and Toyota, the Youth Safety Council, Mt Abe school store and yearbook, Bill Mitchell, Annemarie Altadonna, Associated General Contractors of VT, Vermont State Police, UVM Medical Center, VT Department of Health, Sharon Huntley, TextLess Live More, Langrock Sperry &Wool, Vermont Fish and Wildlife, Amanda Bolduc, WomenSafe, Elliot Cluba, Vermont Family Forest, Fire ProTec, Sharon Compagna, AAA of NNE, Trooper Flansburg, VT Fish and Wildlife, Jim Carter and Tammy Shackett, Pierre Cotton, Local Motion, Middlebury College, UVM Extension, VT National Guard, ANESU Food Service, TurningPoint Center, Hallstrom Racing, Parent Child Center, student actors and make up artists, and the teachers, staff and students at Mt Abe!
(Report provided by Sharon Koller of Mt. Abraham Union High School. Photos by the Youth Safety Council of Vermont).