Our Chicago personal injury lawyers frequently report that Illinois is at the forefront of the teen-driving issue. By utilizing a Graduated Driver’s License system and other tools, the number of teens involved in serious and fatal accidents continues to decline.
Still, teenagers are at highest risk of being involved in a serious or fatal accident. More than 5,000 are killed each year in crashes and 40,000 motorists are injured. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports car accidents are the leading cause of death among teenagers.
Now Ford has announced a major expansion of the program that began in Chicago. The Ford Driving Skills for Life program will receive an additional $1 million and be available to teens in 15 states. The award-winning program provides interactive tools and hands-on training to teach teens about the importance of making good driving decisions behind the wheel.
“Inexperience is the leading cause of crashes in young drivers, and this program delivers the key skill sets that will increase their knowledge, confidence and, ultimately, their safety,” said Ford Executive Sue Cischke. “Ford is passionate about helping young drivers learn the rules of the road, better manage distractions behind the wheel and help make America’s roads safer for all of us.”
This year the program will be expanded to high schools in Birmingham, Little Rock, Harford, Orlando, Tallahassee, Atlanta, Shreveport, Portland, Boston, Jackson (Miss.), Manchester, Albany, Raleigh/Durham, Providence, Charleston and Burlington.
The Ford program concentrates on driving skills in four areas, including distracted driving, speed and space management, hazard recognition and vehicle handling. Research shows those four areas are involved in more than 60 percent of all car accidents involving teenagers.
“This new commitment will bring Ford DSFL into many more communities. State highway safety offices will be able to use this program to complement ongoing laws and programs,” said GHSA Chairman Vernon F. Betkey Jr. “While teen driving safety is a key priority, too often our communities lack the resources to conduct these types of hands-on, high-tech trainings. We are grateful to Ford for helping fill these critical gaps.”
If you or a family member is injured or killed in an Illinois traffic crash, contact the Chicago accident lawyers at at Abels & Annes for a free and confidential appointment to discuss your rights. Call (866) 99-ABELS. There is no fee unless you win.