We are a Coalition of more than 100 individuals and organizations committed to helping teens leverage the proven principles of Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL). We are affiliated with state and local government, law enforcement and public health agencies, traffic safety and injury prevention organizations, schools, universities and businesses. We’re also teens, parents and crash victims.
While teen crashes and fatalities had fallen to record lows in Texas and nationwide, rates began to grow again in 2015. Our goal is zero – no crashes, injuries or fatalities. Ensuring that teens survive their most dangerous driving years is not just the responsibility of parents, police and school officials, but every citizen. Working collectively, our Coalition members are implementing teen safe driving initiatives to focus on 3 top factors contributing to teen crashes in Texas: speed, inattention and seat belt use.
Led by Trish Gaffney, consultant and lifelong educator, our Coalition is working collaboratively to effect change in Texas. We invite you to learn about Coalition initiatives and to join us. There are no monthly meetings or membership dues; your only obligation is to help spread the word about GDL.
|AAA Texas||Our Driving Concern|
|Alliance on Underage Drinking||Our Lady of the Lake University|
|Allstate||Round Rock Police Department|
|All Stop Driving Academy||SADD|
|ANP Driving School||Safe Kids Mid-Texas|
|City of Austin||SafeWay Driving|
|City of Denton||Scott & White Injury Prevention - Central Texas|
|Commercial Texas Driver Training||Stay Safe Driving School|
|Dallas Area Drug Prevention Partnership||Teen Watch Alert|
|Danger Without Intentions||Teens in the Driver Seat|
|Department of State and Health Services||TeenSafe Program|
|East Texas Driving School||Texans Standing Tall|
|ESC Region 6||Texas Department of State Health Services, Title V|
|ESC Region 13||Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service|
|Extra Credit! LLC||Texas Alive Team|
|Georgetown ISD Driver Education||Texas Driver and Traffic Safety Education Association|
|GP Driving School||Texas FCCLA|
|Greater Austin Underage Drinking Council||Texas Municipal Courts Education Center|
|Hempstead High School||Texas Professional Driver Education Association|
|Hutto High School FCCLA / TAFE||Texas PTA|
|Injury Prevention Center of Greater Dallas||Texas Reality Education for Drivers (RED) Program|
|Kingdom Business||Texas State University|
|Lake Worth High School||Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation|
|Richard Lusby||Texas Department of Transportation|
|MADD||Travis County Sheriff Department|
|Memorial Herman Medical Center Trauma/EMS||The Driving Professor|
|Northeast ISD Driver Education||University Medical Center Brackenridge, Trauma Services|
|North Richland Hills Police Department||Williamson County LifeSteps Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition|
More than 14 types of fast-food establishments totaling 60 across the state distributed 28,500 stickers with customer receipts on March 18, 2015. The Coalition is set to reprise the sticker campaign in 2016, with the goal of reaching a wider audience (60,000), to include civic organization participants and driving school clients.
This 2016 campaign has 3 levels of engagement: (1) distribution of a bilingual brochure which focuses on the GDL law in Texas, and a brochure to invite parents and teens to learn about GDL; (2) offering existing groups of parents 5-minute presentations with the most critical steps parents can take to help keep their new teen drivers safe; and (3) facilitating “Steer Your Teen Down the Right Road” presentations, for download at DriveitHOME.org or by thumb drive.
Teen members of the Coalition, working with leaders in schools and through the Texas Department of Transportation, have taken the lead in reaching peers on the importance of teen safe driving in 2016. Steps include presentations to school boards, to other high schools, to parents and teens, using PowerPoints, handouts, word-of-mouth, social media and more regarding distracted driving. Teen leaders’ advice: When events – like National Night Out or Carnivals – happen, and there's an opportunity to present, make it fun. A presentation example: Students played the song “Red Solo Cup” and offered teens red Solo cups full of root beer. The cup became a prop to suggest to the group, “At your next party, when handed one of these, think twice before filling it with something life threatening.”
Students created posters in 2015 to encourage peers to be safe on the road, using the proven principles of Graduated Driver Licensing as guidelines. Students won grants for their schools and became eligible to display their work on the DriveitHOME.org website.
The Coalition hosts a biennial Anti-Crash Bash bringing together members, community and outside resources for a one-day event focused on reducing teen crashes in Texas. The Dell Diamond hosted the 2014 Bash during a Round Rock Express baseball game. The event reached 350 people who attended the Bash in addition to the game attendees who heard the PSA. It also engaged 28 volunteers and 13 different safe driving organizations. A venue in North Texas has proposed a 2016 event in June. Visit this page often for updates!
The Coalition offers this free digital resource to help coaches and adult advisors partner with teens and their parents to promote greater understanding of and adherence to the provisions of the GDL program. The 4-page document includes an overview of how and why GDL works; suggestions for engaging athletes, parents and fans; and a sample code of conduct.
What is the Graduated Driver License program?
First implemented in Michigan and Florida in the mid-1990s, Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) is a three-step system designed to provide novice drivers with the necessary tools to be safe on our roadways and minimize those things that cause them the greatest risk of crash -- distraction caused by passengers and the use of cell phones and other electronic devices, as well as driving late at night and riding unbelted. There is a minimum age for teens to be eligible for a driver's permit, a mandatory holding period or probationary license and a basic or full license.
What does Texas's GDL program entail?
Young Texas drivers must:
Why does Texas need a GDL program?
Motor vehicle crashes are the No. 1 killer of teens, and their crash risk is four times that of an experienced driver. The risk is highest when teens are in the first 12 to 24 months of licensure.
The “License to Save” report issued by The Allstate Foundation in December 2011 estimates that 15,340 people in Texas have been killed in teen-related motor vehicle crashes since 1991. It also estimates that 757 lives have been saved since 1991 with Texas' implementation of GDL laws. The implementation of GDL programs has saved approximately 14,820 lives nationwide since 1991. It is proven to reduce the number of motor vehicle crashes involving teen drivers.
Why are passengers dangerous for teen drivers?
Most teen crashes involve some form of distraction, and young passengers are particularly distracting to novice drivers. A teen driver is twice as likely to be killed in a crash while carrying just one passenger, regardless of whether the passenger is a friend of a sibling. Carrying two passengers increases crash risk by 158 percent, and three passengers increases risk by 207 percent.
Why is nighttime driving risky for teen drivers?
Forty percent of all teen driver fatal crashes occur between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. While Texas does not allow teens on the roadways after midnight or before 5 a.m., parents are encouraged to set earlier times for their teens to be off the roads.
May teen drivers use hands-free cell phones?
No. Texas bans cell phone use – hands-free or handheld – for drivers under 18. Research clearly shows that both handheld and hands-free devices cause manual, cognitive and visual distraction and the National Safety Council and the National Transportation Safety Board have called for a nationwide ban on all cell phone use while driving for all motorists regardless of age.
How can I help a teen driver gain more experience?
Research clearly shows that GDL programs are the most effective tool for addressing teen crash risk because they help novice drivers build skill while minimizing risk. Whether you’re a parent, teacher, coach, older sibling, neighbor or friend, learning about and enforcing the GDL program is important.
Parents in particular play a critical role in teen driver safety. Teens who report having parents that set rules and monitor their activities in a helpful and supportive way are half as likely to crash, 71 percent less likely to drive intoxicated, 30 percent less likely to use a cell phone while driving and 50 percent more likely to wear a safety belt. By partnering with parents, you can help to ensure that they know about and leverage the proven principles of GDL so their teens gain skill and become good drivers for life.
DCH Teen Safe Driver program - for parents and teens
AAA Keys2Drive for parents and teens
Safe Kids - for parents and teens 13/14-years of age
SADD - for parents, teens and educators
National Organizations for Youth Safety for parents, teens and educators
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration - for parents, teens and educators
Entries for the 2015 Texas Teen Safe Driving Coalition GDL Poster Contest closed at 11:59 PM on March 31st. All submitted entries are currently being judged. The winning entries will be announced on April 30th. Thank you to all who entered and best of luck!
On March 18th, 2015 the Texas Teen Safe Driving Coalition was able to distribute 28,500 stickers to Texans across the state. This great feat would not have been possible without the help of the following restaurants and employees that distributed our stickers for us. Thank you so much for helping keep teens, parents, and all of us safe on the road!
Sonic- Robinson Drive- Robinson
Sonic- Sixth Street- Waco
Sonic- Texas Avenue- Bryan
Sonic- Bellmead Drive- Bellmead
Sonic- Central Avenue- Belton
Sonic- Briarcrest Drive- Bryan
Sonic- 401 Texas Avenue- College Station
Sonic- 2900 Texas Avenue- College Station
Sonic- Travis Avenue- Cameron
Sonic- TX Highway 36- Caldwell
Sonic- Highway 190- Copperas Cove
Sonic- Main Street- Gatesville
Sonic- Ellis Street- Groesbeck
Sonic- Market Street- Hearne
Sonic- Hewitt Drive- Woodway
Sonic- Rancier Avenue- Killeen
Sonic- Key Avenue- Lampasas
Sonic- Milam Street- Mexia
Sonic- Main Street- Madisonville
Sonic- Cameron Avenue- Rockdale
Sonic- 57th Street- Temple
Sonic- 19th Street- Waco
Sonic- WS Young Drive- Killeen
Sonic- Interstate 35 Frontage Road- Waco
Sonic- Valley Mills Drive- Waco
Sonic- Robertson Road- Salado
Sonic- Wallace Street- San Saba
Sonic- McGregor Drive- McGregor
Sonic- North Frontage Road- Lorena
Sonic- John David Drive- Killeen
Sonic- West Adams Avenue- Temple
Sonic- China Spring Road- Waco
Sonic- West Oak Street- West
Sonic- Oakmark Drive- Belton
Sonic- Stan Schlueter Loop- Killeen
Sonic- Bagby Avenue- Waco
Chic-fil-A- Southwest Drive- Abilene
Burger King- Clack Drive- Abilene
Arby's- Clack Drive- Abilene
Sonic- Clack Drive- Abilene
Sonic- Buffalo Gap Road- Abilene
Sonic- Judge Ely Boulevard- Abilene
Golden Chick- State Highway 351- Abilene
Sonic- Early Boulevard- Early
Chicken Express- Early Boulevard- Early
Dairy Queen- Austin Avenue- Brownwood
Cici's Pizza- US-59- Porter
Pete's Burger Place- TX 494 Loop- Porter
La Casita- FM 1314- Porter
Hypnotic Donuts- Garland Road- Dallas
DUGG Burger- Garland Road- Dallas
Keller's- Garland Road- Dallas
McDonald's- Garland Road- Dallas
Sonic- Buckner Boulevard- Dallas
Sonic- Austin Avenue- Georgetown
Sonic- Williams Drive- Georgetown
Golden Chick- FM 685- Hutto
McDonald's- Highway 79- Hutto
Chick-fil-A- Limestone Commercial Drive- Pflugerville
Sonic- West Young Street- Llano