First Coast (Jacksonville) Professional and Commercial Drivers Offer Tips and Advice to Teen Drivers


If your teenager has just received their driver’s license, this blog will be interesting and helpful to you. Although any driver can get into an accident, new drivers are at greater risk. These accidents can cause severe personal injuries and occasionally death. For example, in 2008, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) nine teens between the ages of 16 to 19 died everyday from motor vehicle-related personal injuries. Also alarming, is the fact that leading cause of death among U.S. teens is motor vehicle crashes.

New drivers are at greater risk of being involved in an motor vehicle crash because they are faced with numerous distractions (cell phones, music, passengers, etc.) and lack experience.

Below is a list of safety tips from professional and commercial drivers parents can teach to their children in order to keep Florida’s roads safe:

Professional Driver, Racer, Scott Lagasse Jr.:
Lagasse Jr. is a professional stock car driver from St. Augustine, Florida, he has competed since age 7. Lagasse says driving is a privilege, whether it be racing or on driving on the road, and should be taken seriously. Drivers should steer clear of distracted driving such as texting and talking on the cell phone but also need to be aware of their surroundings. Lagasse Jr. warns, do not assume other drivers know you are around them. Think ahead.

Professional Driver, Police officer, Sgt. Vito Terry:
Terry urges that before you drive off in a car, your cell phone should be turned off and placed in the floorboard behind you. To eliminate distractions, Terry also advises new drivers to keep the music volume low and maintain two hands on the steering wheel.
Use your signal turns, especially when changing lanes – it is a state law now.
Follow the speed limits – driving too slow is just as dangerous as driving too fast. Follow the speed limits and gauge the flow of traffic around you.

Ramzi Salameh, the Insurance Guy:
Salameh is a Jacksonville, FL Allstate Insurance Co. personal financial representative. Allstate has instituted a program that encourages all drivers to stay off their cell phones while driving.

Commercial Driver, trucker, William “Fred” Durbin:

Durbin is an independent owner-operator leased on with Landstar Trucking Co. Durbin is also a Landstar 3 Million Mile Safe Driver designee, because he has had no preventable accidents in over 3 million miles driven.
Being very experienced on the road, Durbin urges new drivers to be respectful of other motorists and keep the focus on driving. Also, drivers need to be aware of how much longer it takes for tractor trailers to stop and should, therefore, avoid cutting off big trucks off and slamming on their breaks.

If you would like to read more advice from other professional and commercial drivers please see Professional and Commercial drivers of Florida offer tips on how new driver can keep Florida’s roads safe.