Doctors doing their part in teen safe driving effort - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Doctors doing their part in teen safe driving effort

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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

Dr. Cathy Wood of Partners in Pediatrics in Montgomery has guided parents and their infants into a healthy life for 26 years and now she says it's her responsibility to guide her teen patients on the road with safe driving habits.

"We spend a lot of time talking to parents about how important it is to immunize your baby and how important it is to protect them from disease and we're losing them when they get into that teenage and young adult age," Dr. Wood said.

Dr. Wood says about 30 percent of her current patients are teens. She says over the years, she's lost several of them in vehicle crashes.

"Lots of kids lost because they didn't have seat belts on; kids involved with substances and driving," Dr. Wood said.

That's why the Alabama Academy of Pediatrics with a grant from All-State and the help from 10 other organizations including the Alabama Safe Teen Driving Coalition prepared this safe driving toolkit, filled with educational materials doctors can share with patients and their parents.

Inside the kit is a copy of the Alabama Graduated Driver's License law, a fact sheet, a parent-teen agreement and a 50-hour driving log.

"It all boils down to not being distracted and really following the rules of the road, but in order to do that you got to learn about the law and learn how to be a safer driver," Alabama chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics Executive Director Linda Lee said.

"And you need to have lost of conversations about what is safe driving and how much practice you really need before you get out on the road," Dr. Wood said.

So far, Lee says 115 of the 500 tool kits have been distributed to doctors across the state. The academy plans to hand out more at four regional meetings later this year. Pediatric doctors not in attendance will get their kits in the mail.

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