“STOPPED” program aims to educate young drivers in Michigan

INGHAM COUNTY, Mich. (WLNS) – If you’re a parent who has a new teenage driver, have you ever wondered if they’re following the rules of the road?

By using a statewide program called STOPPED (Sheriffs Telling Our Parents and Promoting Educated Drivers), you can find out if your child has ever been pulled over by police and for the last 8 years it’s also helped teach kids to be better drivers.

Besides striving to reduce the number of traffic crashes, STOPPED hopes to kick bad driving habits to the curb sooner rather than later.

“That’s the whole goal is the safety,” said Ingham County Sheriff Scott Wriggelsworth.

School is out for the summer which means more teenage drivers are hitting the road and Sheriff Scott Wriggelsworth says if his deputies can help teach young drivers how to drive safely to avoid traffic incidents…then STOPPED is considered a success.

“Our hope is with this notification, the parents will know what happened, they can do some corrective action and it’s all about the safety of the young drivers,” Sheriff Wriggelsworth stated.

How does it work? Parents register a vehicle driven by their teenager and are issued a small sticker to place on the window to notify sheriff’s officials that they’re registered.

“We’re not going to be targeting kids with the stop sticker on their car but we think it’s important at the sheriff’s offices in the state to make sure the parents are notified when their kids are driving and have law enforcement contact,” Sheriff Wriggelsworth added.

Data shows that drivers in the county who range in age 15 through 20 are involved in more than 20% of traffic crashes and because of that reason parents say they would consider enrolling their young drivers in this program.

“I think it’s very interesting and I might be willing to check into it,” said Jackie Blanc of Potterville.

“It’d be really good to know if our kids were pulled over…sometimes they’re 100% honest and sometimes they just forget to tell you things,” Phil Braunscheidel of Grand Ledge stated.

STOPPED isn’t a “get out of jail free” card….rather a STOP and make you think program.

“There can still be enforcement action on these stops either way we would let you know,” said Sheriff Wriggelsworth.

Right now, around 30,000 vehicles are registered for this program across the state with nearly 80 sheriff’s department’s participating.

If you’re interested in signing up, head to the Seen on 6 section of our website.

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