Letter to Editor from local teen on Distracted Driving

Zach Fincher of Rock Solid Youth Group








Dear Editor,

I want to help bring awareness to the dangers of DISTRACTED DRIVING. I lost my Nana in a tragic car crash two years ago because someone was reading a text while driving. I don’t want this to happen to anyone else, so I would like to remind people that these are preventable actions.

Over the next few months our Rock Solid Youth Group will be making posters on the dangers of distracted driving to share in our schools and community, we’ll write a song to share this message, too. In addition, we’ll be asking our local Sheriff’s Office to help support us in getting the message out. Did you know it is illegal to use a cell phone while driving in Washington State that is not considered a hands-free device? Unfortunately, I see many people everyday passing my school using a cellphone, while driving, with it held up to their ear and I’ve even seen people texting and driving down Spring Street.

  • Did you know, “When you text and drive you are 23 times more likely to crash.”
  • Did you know, “77% of young adults are very or somewhat confident that they can safely text while driving.”
  • Did you know, “48% of kids (12-17) have been in a car while the driver was texting.” (www.textinganddrivingsafety.com)

Please join us in helping to prevent Distracted Driving in our community. Please put your cell phones away when you get in your car and speak up if the driver of your car uses their cell phone (non hands-free device) or starts to text while driving. You just might save a life.


Zach Fincher
Rock Solid Youth Group


L-R: Zach Fincher, Per Black, Madrone Jamison, Lucas Gao and Rachel May, attended the WA State Prevention Summit together in Oct. 2013 and returned to our community to help bring about positive change.

The group in the photo above are researching the dangers of Distracted Driving and Impaired Driving. They are doing this as part of a grant they were accepted to participate in with State Farm. These students will be sharing their findings in a variety of ways: songwriting, writing letters to the Editor, making brochures and posters to distribute and put up at their school and in the community, a total of 10 “activities” to help communicate and bring awareness to these important safety issues.

They have also contacted the Sheriff to ask for his support on these issues and see how they can collaborate on building awareness. They are hoping to locate a Distracted Driver simulator that can come to San Juan Island, too. These teens have given up precious “free-time” to meet and work on these activities that hopefully will impact our community members and may end up saving someone’s life. Thanks for your support!

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