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SLO County receives grant for youth traffic safety program

Posted at 10:40 PM, Oct 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-24 01:53:35-04

The County of San Luis Obispo Behavioral Health Department has been awarded a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety.

The grant is worth $55,000 and will be used for a year-long program of public awareness efforts to prevent traffic related deaths and injuries.

It gives local youth opportunities to lead projects that will actively engage their peers, family members and community members in reducing underage drinking and the issues that result from the behavior.

The agency will use the funding to continue ongoing education efforts countywide and as a commitment to keep our roadways safe, improving the quality of life through both awareness and education.

The grant comes during National Teen Driver Safety Week, a time where organizatoins are working in schools throughout the county on campaigns promoting safe driving, including distracted driving and impaired driving prevention messaging.

Experts say vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for teens 15 to 18 years old.

According to the California Highway Patrol, six out of every 10 crashes involving teens were caused by driver distraction. "Like anything new, it takes practice and experience to be a good driver," California Highway Patrol San Luis Obispo Area Commander, Mike Bueno said. "Teen drivers are also more likely to take risks and pick up bad habits behind the wheel, which is why it is important for parents to be involved and take steps to ensure their teen is staying safe on the road."