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Doug Herbert reacts to latest deadly teen crash

Published: Oct. 27, 2015 at 11:32 PM EDT|Updated: Nov. 27, 2015 at 12:32 AM EST
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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - When news broke of the crash on Colony Road early Sunday morning my heart sank. One teenager dead, two others in the hospital in stable condition. Other words that stood out from the email - "speeding," "reckless driving."

This was the initial report. What we know today is 17-year-old Abigail McGaha was charged with involuntary manslaughter and reckless driving. What we haven't learned yet is what happened in the seconds before police say she over-corrected, hit a tree and crashed.

The impact killed her backseat passenger Alex Mundt of New Mexico.

I imagine every parent with a teen driver feels that same chill when we read of a crash where teens leave in ambulances, or never make it back home. Doug Herbert knows that feeling.

For years he was in the spotlight as an NHRA drag racing star. But since January of 2008, Doug has worked to shed light on the darkest day of his life. The day his two sons died in a senseless crash.

His 17-year-old son Jon was behind the wheel. He was speeding, and according to Doug driving recklessly for Jetton Road's curves. In the car with Jon, his youngest boy, 12-year-old James.

"I just wish my younger son and told his brother, 'Hey you're driving dumb, stop it!'" Doug told me today.

Of this deadly crash in Charlotte, Doug said, "The only thing good that can possibly come out of this tragedy is other teenagers will go, 'Wow I need to make a change!' And parents need to take this chance to talk to their teens."

Doug encourages parents, "Give your kid a hall pass so they can call you up and you'll pick them up with no consequences. You can talk to them a little about it, but you're not going to bust them. You know, I tell parents at BRAKES, tell you kid to call me if you don't want to go get them. I'll go get them and bring them home! You want them to come home because the alternative phone call is one nobody wants to get. Ever!"

BRAKES has their intensive training all across the country. To learn more about upcoming classes, and to sign up check out their web site. The classes are free.

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