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Teen driving safety event returning to Georgia

Georgia one of five states to receive grant

POSTED: June 6, 2017 12:41 p.m.
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The Ford Driving Skills for Life is returning to Georgia in February. Dates and locations will be announced later this year.

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The Governor's Office of Highway Safety is honored to announce Georgia is one of five states selected to receive a teen driving safety grant from the Governors Highway Safety Association and the Ford Driving Skills for Life.

Ford Driving Skills for Life will offer hands-on, interactive lessons on safe driving and innovative ways to communicate safety to their peers at Georgia's Youth and Young Adult Leadership Conference that is hosted by the Governor's Office of Highway Safety.

More than 150 students are expected to attend the two-day conference that will be held in February of 2018.  The exact dates, times and location will be announced later this year.

"Ford Driving Skills for Life has been a great partner with the Georgia Governor's Office of Highway Safety," Harris Blackwood, director of the Governor's Office of Highway Safety said. "We are grateful for the investment they are making on behalf of our teen drivers."

A recent report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety shows the importance of the young adult driver safety training Ford Driving Skills for Life has been providing in all 50 states since its inception in 2003.  The AAA report shows newly licensed teen drivers were three times as likely as adults to be involved in fatal crashes.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a total of 1,886 teen drivers were killed in 2015, which is an increase of 163 more that in 2014.  The final NHTSA report for 2016 due later this year is expected to show an increase in the number of teen deaths from 2015.

“Clearly novice drivers continue to pose a risk on the road to themselves and others," Jonathan Adkins, executive director of the Governors Highway Safety Association said. "States will use the funds to implement recommendations made in a recent GHSA and DFSL report that highlights the risks of teen drivers and promising approaches to prevent teen driving crashes.”

This marks the fourth time in the last two years that Ford Driving Skills for Life has provided some type of important driver safety training for Georgia teens.  More than 150 teens turned out for a DFSL driving training event held at Stone Mountain in April 2016, and an DFSL grant paid for the Governor's Office of Highway Safety's Teen Driving Roadeo attended by more than 100 teens last November in Jesup.

DFSL also took part in the Governor's Office of Highway Safety's 'Heads Up Georgia' public service campaign that aired during Georgia Public Broadcasting's coverage of Georgia high school football last fall. Teen drivers learned firsthand on the DFSL course the dangers of distracted driving that were recorded and aired during the season on GPB.

The grant from the Governors Highway Safety Association and Ford Driving Skills for Life is for $74,000 to pay for not only the 2018 GOHS Georgia Youth and Young Adult Leadership Conference, but also teen driving safety programs in Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire and New York.

For more information about the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, please go to our websites www.gahighwaysafety.org or www.headsUPgeorgia.com.  Follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/gahighwaysafety and on Twitter at @gohsgeorgia for the latest highway safety information.

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