NRSF Drowsy Driving Grant Results: Tennessee

Tennessee NRSF

The Tennessee Highway Safety Office (THSO) was one of the recipients of GHSA and the National Road Safety Foundation's (NRSF) 2017 drowsy driving grants. THSO chose to address the issue from two angles, using their grant to expand partnerships with both Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) and the Tennessee Trucking Foundation (TTF).

THSO and SADD kicked off their partnership at the organization's 2017 National Conference, where three participating Tennessee SADD chapters met with GHSA and NRSF to brainstorm opportunities to educate their peers on the dangers of drowsy driving. Throughout the fall semester, the students worked to implement these strategies at their respective schools. The chapter at Gatlinburg Pittman High School hosted a "Jammie Day" during Drowsy Driving Prevention Week, surveying fellow students about their sleep habits to assess their likelihood to drive drowsy. Gibson County School District's chapter promoted drowsy driving education through social media and community events, highlighting the experience of three students from the District who were recently involved in a drowsy driving crash. Finally, the Putnam County Schools' chapter is developing a peer-to-peer drowsy driving education guide for additional SADD chapters to use in future efforts.

The TTF used funding to discourage truck drivers and students from driving fatigued. TTF created two presentations, one geared toward truck drivers and one toward high schoolers, to include in their permanent Road Team educational toolkit. The presentation for students was shown at more than 20 high schools throughout the state, while the truck driver presentation was given at TTF's annual conference. In addition to the presentations, TTF also produced rack cards containing information on drowsy driving from GHSA's publication Wake Up Call: Drowsy Driving and What States Can Do. The rack cards have been distributed at state welcome centers and are being used as promotional materials at schools and other public events.

Through these efforts, THSO's funds were able to reach two of the populations most vulnerable to drowsy driving: teens and long-haul truckers, resulting in programs and materials with a lasting impact to combat drowsy driving within the state.

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