Graduation is upon us and we want to make sure we graduate with our class safely this year reminds Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

Let’s start with the first class: Underage drinking can result in tragedy so let’s keep those critical lines of communication open when it comes to talking about the dangers of underage drinking, driving and graduation parties and events.

Next, who’s behind the wheel? Are your kids or is a friend driving? Is there a designated driver, or will they be renting a limo? Make sure your teen has a way of contacting you and you can contact your teen; warn them of the dangers of talking or texting while driving.

Let’s not have any hidden agendas! Get the evening’s itinerary as well as a list of names and phone numbers of each person with your teen. Insist that no changes be made to the evening itinerary unless you grant permission. Know who is supervising all events in which your teen is participating. Make sure your teen has money to cover alternative transportation costs (Cab/Uber/Lyft), if necessary.

Make sure your teen knows how to handle difficult situations; avoiding or accepting a ride from a drunk driver, rejecting offers of alcohol or legal and illegal drugs, and not succumbing to pressure to engage in sexual activity. 

And parents, the same lesson here goes for you. Set an example of responsibility and accountability to your children.

For additional graduation safety, talk to your local school administrators.

Congratulations Grads, let’s do it with class and with safety!

Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

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