MIAMI COUNTY, Ohio (WDTN) – As prom approaches, Ohio State Highway Patrol is urging teen drivers to use extreme caution as they remain one of the most at-risk groups for accidents.
In a release, OSP said between 2016 and 2018, more than 132,000 crashes in Ohio involved teen drivers.
Of those, an action by the teen driver contributed to 71 percent.
On prom nights, extra risks are added in such as distractions and impaired driving.
Sergeant Vee Witcher of Piqua’s OSP post said they are anticipating prom nights and will be out and about.
“We’ve posted federal overtime hours to where night and day time hours we’re out looking for distracted driving and traffic offenses that lead to crashes,” said Witcher. “That’s in addition to increased patrol with other agencies.”
Next Saturday is Troy High School’s prom.
Chris Piper, the districts’ superintendent, said they are taking extra action to show students the danger of drinking and driving.
“It’ll be one of those programs where they demonstrate an accident scene, talk to students about the danger of driving in general and under the influence,” said Piper. “We’ll also be partnering with Premier Health, bringing in their care flight helicopter to be a part of that activity.”
But both Piper and Sgt. Witcher say the conversation should start with parents at home.
“Be aware of their schedules, know the time of these events, make sure that there’s safety measures in place,” said Witcher.
“Any chance you have to talk to kids, especially right before a night like prom, is a good chance to talk to them about making safe choices,” said Piper.
This comes just one year after a prom night crash in Butler County killed one and injured three.