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Sixteen Year Old Son Response on Speed Kills(18 posts)

Sixteen Year Old Son Response on Speed Killsrwbadley
Nov 20, 2002 10:37 PM
Hi, this is RWBadley's 16 year old son.

A couple Saturdays ago I was caught speeding on a open stretch of high way at 99 mph at 12:30 am. There wasn't any other cars on the road except a couple cars about a 1/2 a mile behind me. My "hooligan friend" offered some advice by suggesting I speed up the pace a little, and I did. One of those couple cars a 1/2 mile behind me turned out to be highway patrol and caught up to me and paced me before turning on his lights. I don't believe I was actually doing 99 mph, probably closer to 95 or so, but he got me.

The officer said he could have nailed me with reckless and curfew, on top of the basic speeding ticket and the lack of current registration and insurance (both of which were in the car, but I was too nervous to try and find them, and handed him the old registration and insurance).

Few issues I would like to address-
- A lot of you guys said you would have my father take away my keys. From my perspective, this is like taking my life. I love driving. Even driving the speed limit. Driving is a nessessity to me as well; I have to drive to school to work to home every single day.

- I knew the dangers of going that fast and I did it anyway, for thrills. I know I am not immortal, I never pretended to be invincible. Anything I say will not persuade you otherwise, but like a skydiver takes his chances in the sky, I took my chances on the road.

- My perspective before the ticket was that of "accidents happen". My perspective now is "accidents happen, but can be prevented." I learned a lot from the one ticket, mostly about responsibility as a driver and as a person. I used to be the "doer" in the group, the one with the guts to take a dare no one else would do.
a brave postMJ
Nov 21, 2002 12:48 AM
when I was sixteen I started driving and did alot of stupid things (in a car and otherwise) - so did most of my friends - most of us made it through high school and university - in one way it's part of growing up - but it was still stupid - it's a good lesson to learn: accidents can be prevented
Good for you.Eager Beagle
Nov 21, 2002 1:19 AM
But remember, you have to be very unlucky as a skydiver to hit someone else, although you might kill yourself.

Cars are very different.

It makes me feel old to know that someone your age can get a car that will do that speed. I would have been thrilled with 50 at that age...

Got a bike?
Your post shows your maturity and honesty. Your dad should......IAM
Nov 21, 2002 4:03 AM
be proud.

When I was your age I thought I was the best driver in the world. A few minor ( and one not so minor) accidents proved
me wrong. Now at 37 I am a way better driver than I was then,
but still not as good as I thought I was then. No matter what we are told we still have to learn some lessons the hard way. It seems as though you have taken a step in the right direction.

In 3 years my son will be 16 and I'm already nervous. He'll
take drivers ed and I'll tell him all the lessons that I
learned, then I'll hope for the best. Yeah I'm nervous but I imagine that my parents were too. For kids it's part of growing up and for parents it's part of letting go.
Gutsy post..........Len J
Nov 21, 2002 5:16 AM
You should be proud of yourself for standing up, taking responsibility & speaking out.

Few thoughts:

1.) Life is about choices. You made the choice to drive fast, you have to take the consequences.

2.)As a father of 4 (18 to 23 YO) I have to tell you that the biggest fear a parent has is a knock on the door at midnight from a cop, to tell me that one of my kids was hurt or killed in a car accident. The second biggest fear is that same call from you telling them that you have hurt or killed someone else. A Parents whole job is to get their kids thru safely to adulthood with maturity, responsibility, a sense of right from wrong & no burdens to bear in excess of what their children can handle. I (& it sounds like your Dad) are always trying to give you enough freedom to allow you to make your own mistakes while not putting you in a position where your mistakes could harm you or anyone else. This is a tough balance to strike and I guarantee that if your Dad is doing his job, you will never feel like he gives you enough freedom & he will always feel like he gives you too much.

3.) Your post seems to imply that the only one who would have been hurt would have been you (no cars within 1/2 mile etc). The truth is that those in the car could have been hurt or killed. The hardest phone call I ever had to make in my 48 years was to the Single mother of my best friend when I was 18, to tell her that her Son had been killed in a car accident. Trust me, you don't want to have to make that call or live with the knowledge that you were responsible partly for a friends death.

4.) The best lessons I have learned in my life have been from the hardest situitations. It sounds like this has taught you much. The test will be 6 months from now when the memory dims and you are having fun & someone suggests that you "go faster". What choice will you make. Your Dad wants to make sure that this message sticks, the fact that driving means so much to you is exactly why it is an appropriate punishment to take away your driving privlidges. Your Dad is trying to "Save your life" by making sure you remember the next time you are tempted.

Thanks for being so honest and open and explaining your side. I hope you take the spirit of this post for what it is, a caring post that doesn't want to see you hurt. Good Luck & Good Life.

Great...but...can you identify Iraq on a map?!? :-)) (nm)RhodyRider
Nov 21, 2002 6:39 AM
you don't sound very sorryColnagoFE
Nov 21, 2002 6:57 AM
#1...driving is not a right. if you keep driving this way you will lose your license and no amount of whining about how driving is your life will change that. driving is convenient, but there are other ways to get to school and work i'd imagine. it is hardly a neccesity. try riding your bike sometime. it's better for you anyway.

#2...learn from your mistakes. sure i drove 100 when i was a teenager and lived through it but it was a really stupid thing to do in retrospect. i easily could have died. save the adrenaline thrills for a race track where it's only you that can be killed doing it.

#3...i hope this is true. kids shouldn't have to die because they feel like they have to be the most daring one in the group.
you don't sound very sorrySintesi
Nov 21, 2002 7:12 AM
Agreed. Actions have consequences, even though you learned your lesson you still deserve a fair amount of punishment because you knew better in the first place. The fact that the you put partial blame on your friend and takes issue with the cop over 4 mph (99 v. 95) shows a lack a maturity and a desire not to take full responsibility for your actions.

Dad, take away his keys for awhile. BTW, "Driving is life?" what kind of lessons is this kid absorbing?
So what is your punishment? nmLLSmith
Nov 21, 2002 7:16 AM
learn from ittrekkie1
Nov 21, 2002 7:33 AM
Just remember that the one thing you value so much, driving and the freedom it gives you, you can lose if you get caught repeating this. I'd bet most everyone here has done a similar thing in the past, particularly when young. You must realize, as it seems you do, that when you do such things, you can get caught, or there could be terrible consequences, and then your whole life could change for the worse. Aside from getting a ticket or losing your driver's license, how would you feel if you wrecked at that speed and killed or maimed your friend, or someone else? You would regret it every minute of every day of the rest of your life. Also, you may think you have great driving skills, and therefore an accident is very unlikely. Ya, we all thought that, that is, until something totally unexpected happens, and either you can't prevent it no matter what you do, or you really don't have the experience in handling a car in an emergency situation, and blow it. Things like obstacles in the road, animals jumping out, tires blowing, really do happen, even though you never think they will happen to you.

Now that you've been caught once, just remember you are on probation in everyone's eyes now until you're 18-21 years old. You are on the bubble, and now you'll have to be extra careful, or that bubble will burst. Even an innocent mistake could blow it for you now. You gotta be extra careful, even aside from avoiding the risky moves.

If you value driving, be careful you don't lose the right to do it. Oh, and actions speak louder than words. It doesn't really matter what you say right now. How you act from now on is what will matter.
fake response.... sounds to good for someone 16 years old <nm>longfellow68
Nov 21, 2002 9:17 AM
Too good. I guess the kid can write ok. RW nmrwbadley
Nov 21, 2002 11:24 AM
Learn from your mistakes....DINOSAUR
Nov 21, 2002 9:41 AM
That is a big lesson in life, most people keep on making the same mistakes over-and-over again and blame it on everything else accept themself.

And I've seen a lot of kids lie to their parents and say the cop was wrong and the cop is the one lying. And the parents take the side of the kid and sooner or later down the road the kid ends up in a bad crash, or worse.

I used to speed for a living. Loved it, still do, but now it's riding my bike. When I thought about speed the first thing I thought about was what I liked about riding my bike and that was the love of speed.

Be careful also of peer presure, that is where a lot of kids get into trouble. Don't let anyone dare you to do something.

Also some people get away with stuff, the chance of receiving a speeding ticket on a Ca freeway is about the same as winning the lottery. We used to joke about this.
And some people can't blink without getting caught.

I survived raising two teenage boys (now 31 and 35) and I now have a teenage daughter. I impressed upon her these things when I taught her how to drive

1. Don't speed. Even 5MPH can make a difference if you are going to be involved in an accident.

2. Don't tailgate (this is one law that needs to be enforced) Give yourself a cushion. Chances are the guy behind you is tailgating you also.

3. Make sure and really LOOK before you turn left from an intersection, often a car will be there but you just won't see it.

4. Don't talk on your cell phone when driving

5. Give yourself and "out" avoid driving in large packs of traffic if possible.

6. Don't drive in the fast lane, unless to pass, then get back over (90% of people who receive tickets for speeding are in the fast lane as drivers behind you will push you to go faster).

7. Don't lose you temper while driving (such as slamming on your brakes because some idiot behind you is trying to drive up your exhaust pipe).

8. And of course, without saying, don't drink and drive. Alcohol kills more people on the freeway than anything else. I can't stand the smell of alcohol anymore because of all the drunks I arrested.

We all make mistakes... life goes takes a man of character to step up to the plate and admit that they are wrong....

Driving is fun, I love to drive. Driving is also a big responsibilty. Some people never find out until too late. Consider yourself lucky for finding out now. Maybe that ticket was a blessing in disquise....sometimes life works that way...

This was a good topic..
Driving is a privilege, son, not a rightStarliner
Nov 21, 2002 9:56 AM
A driving privilege is something you earn, by demonstrating you can drive and handle an automobile, and by agreeing to do it responsibly.

Driving fast for thrills violates that agreement. That you did it because a friend urged you to do so is especially worrisome, because it suggests you lack the backbone to make your own decisions, and that you are susceptable to allowing others 'steer' you away from good judgement.

The best thing about this is that you have a second chance - you didn't get into an accident, hurting yourself and others. Some people need to be hurt in order to learn their lesson. Fortunately, you weren't hurt, however, whether or your lesson was learned is something that only you can prove. For time will tell how well you handle this opportunity to demonstrate a basic level of maturity and responsibility that was absent that night.

What you did should cost nobody else anything more than their worry for you. In other words, any and all fines and upcharges in insurance costs are on you.
what about a speed limiter??quadzilla1
Nov 18, 2002 11:02 PM
I often thought about this myself....Ever rent a truck from Ryder? Can't get those suckers up over 65 downhill...they have speed limiters. I wonder if there is a company out there that could retrofit one to a passenger car?? Hmmm..maybe I just blew my chance to make my first million...
just put a block under the gas pedal nmtrekkie1
Nov 22, 2002 8:46 AM
I'm glad you got a ticket...empacher6seat
Nov 23, 2002 10:10 PM
not so you could be punished, but it's a better way to learn not to speed then killing yourself or, even worse, an innocent stranger.

I'm 19 and was almost killed in an accident a few summers ago. I never speed now, and refuse to drive with some of my friends who haven't matured enough to know they're only half the driver they think they are.

I hope your response was genuine, for your sake.

one more thing about your previous perspective on driving: "accidents happen". They aren't accidents... it's not like the car decides to speed, or run a red light or whatever happens that causes an accident. I'd be willing to bet 99% of car crashes result from human error, not something completely random and "accidental".
Nov 27, 2002 12:05 AM
99? sweet...what kind of car?

seriously, though, can a cop give a ticket without proof? i though if you asked "can i see proof?" (or something of the sort) the cop had to basically put up, or shut up. i don't know, i've never had a ticket.

invest in a good radar dectector.