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Racing for safety

"We decided to do something to show how quickly you can buckle a seatbelt," said Aviza. "Everyone was so pumped up about it."

According to Aviza, about 20 teams participated in the event. Aviza, who participated, said her team's time was 51 seconds.

"[Sean] made the fatal decision of not wearing a seatbelt and that was what destroyed his life; it takes one second to buckle your seatbelt," said Aviza, who was discussing how the event correlates well with the mission of SADD, which is "to help students make positive decisions about challenges in their everyday lives."

Aviza said that the entire event is worth it, even if they only get the message to one or two people.

Other seatbelt-buckling initiatives that SADD has undertaken include seatbelt checks in the school's parking lot.

Another passenger in French's accident, 17-year-old Ian Moore, suffered paralyzing injuries. The driver, also 17, had been arrested for drunken driving 18 days prior to the fatal crash. Shortly after the fatal accident, Sean's Law was enacted, which now requires immediate suspension of a license for 16- and 17-year-olds arrested on drunken driving charges.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), teens and young adults are the group least likely to buckle up and most likely to die in traffic accidents. In 2001, more than 5,000 teens died in auto vehicle accidents and two-thirds of them hadn't buckled up.

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