Ford’s Free Hands-On Driver Safety Program for Newly Licensed Drivers Begins 2020 Tour

 

Ford Driving Skills for Life program kicks off in Orlando, Florida on January 25th. The program has been running for 17 years now and will be expanding this year to cross coast to coast for over 80 safe-driving sessions. These free hands-on sessions will make stops in Alaska, Arizona, California, Georgia, Iowa, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, Michigan, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, and Tennessee.

The program pairs newly licensed drivers with professional driving instructors and focuses on information not currently offered in standard driver education courses. This free program instead focuses on the critical factors impacting teen crashes: vehicle handling, hazard recognition, speed, space management, distraction, and impairment.

“Despite progress in recent years, teens continue to be overrepresented in motor vehicle crashes and fatalities across the country and vehicle crashes continue to be the leading cause of death for newly licensed drivers,” said Jim Graham, global manger, Ford Driving Skills for Life. “We look forward to continuing and expanding our efforts to help reduce the number of crashes and fatalities through real-world training and improved decision-making skills. Working with all of our partner organizations we believe we are making a substantial contribution to safer driving.”

The program also addresses the various uses of technology while driving, from the positives to the negatives. They’ll address how driver assist technologies help reduce accidents and fatalities as well as how misusing technology while driving leads to distracted driving-led accidents and fatalities. A 2019 global survey commissioned by Ford Driving Skills for Life found that 65% of U.S. and 79% of Canadian Gen Z drivers agreed that using their cellphones while driving was a serious offense that should result in severe punishment; however, 62% of U.S. and 58% of Canadian Gen Z drivers admitted they still do it. To deter this, Ford Driving Skills for Life aims to educate teenage drivers about the dangerous and fatal repercussions of using their phones while behind the wheel.

“Teen and new driver inexperience often result in dangerous behaviors such as speeding, alcohol use and not wearing a seat belt – all of which contribute to increased risk for new drivers,” said Jonathan Adkins, executive director, Governors Highway Safety Association. “For this reason, the association and State Highway Safety Offices are looking forward to bringing this powerful program to even more teens and their parents – coast to coast and around the globe.”

Ford Driving for Life Skills will be partnering with Governors Highway Safety Association as it travels across the country. For those unable to attend a free in-person session or those looking for extra practice, there is also a free online “Academy” for teens and parents at www.drivingskillsforlife.com/academy.

Ford Skills for Life will tour over 30 countries in 2020 spanning from North and South America, Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. Since 2008, the program has been able to provide valuable insights with road safety issues worldwide.

Stay up to date with Ford aiding in community events near you by following Keller Bros Ford in Lititz’s blog! Keep your newly licensed young driver safe with a new Ford vehicle! Find the model that best fits your family at Keller Bros Ford Lititz!

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