Noticing the signs of a distracted teen driver and talking to teens about the consequences are first steps parents can take to help improve road safety. This April marks the third annual National Distracted Driving Awareness Month and Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy is joining forces with advocacy groups, including Impact Teen Drivers, in an effort to raise awareness of the effects of teen distracted driving through free programs including a distracted driving demo, Parent & Teen Workshops and driving assessments. Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy, a state-certified driving school, aims to prepare teens for today’s driving environment and create safer and more responsible drivers for life.
On April 2nd at Calabasas High School, Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy is offering distracted driving demonstrations to teens as part of California Teen Safe Driving Week, which kicks off National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. The demonstration allows students to first drive a closed course without distractions and then again with the introduction of distractions – ranging from noisy passengers to cell phone usage to performing simple tasks within the vehicle. This demonstration provides a firsthand experience with the physical and emotional effects of driving distracted. Throughout the month of April, Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy is offering free Parent & Teen Workshops at their facility located at 8231 West 3rd Street in Los Angeles. During the workshops, coaches are providing valuable information on Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) laws, teen driving statistics, and strategies for safe driving. Additionally, during the month of April the Academy is offering free assessments drives. Parents can also download a copy of the “Top 10 Tips for Parents of Teen Drivers“.
A 2012 report from the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) revealed the number of teenage drivers who died in crashes increased by 11 percent in the first half of 2011 after an eight year decline. Additionally, teens are more likely than any other age group to be involved in a fatal crash where distraction is reported, according to the National Highway Safety Transportation Association (NHTSA). Both new and used Mercedes-Benz passenger cars have added safety features but the truth is, distracted driving is a major problem for drivers. “Teens are now faced with more distractions behind the wheel, compared to previous generations of new drivers,” said Marc Hemsworth, senior driving coach at Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy and former LAPD officer and chief driving instructor. “Reinforcing the dangers of distracted driving and being a good role model are a few ways parents can help improve driver safety for their teens and everyone on the road.”
For more details and to schedule a one hour drive, interested teens and parents should contact the Academy directly at 855-MBDA-USA or 855-623-2872.