The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) and Ford Driving Skills for Life (Ford DSFL) have awarded funding to support teen safe driving programs to State Highway Safety Offices in five states.
Now in its eleventh year, GHSA and Ford DSFL’s grant program helps states instill safe driving habits in teenage drivers.
“Inexperienced drivers pose a risk both to themselves and others on the road,” said Ford DSFL Global Programs Manager Jim Graham. “The latest data show young drivers were involved in 4,853 fatal crashes in 2016. We are thrilled to continue providing states the opportunity to build programs teaching teens to make smart decisions behind the wheel and work to prevent these tragic incidents.”
States and activities awarded funding:
Delaware Office of Highway Safety partnered with the Delaware Department of Education to conduct a contest encouraging the state’s driver’s education students to create a video on how to react to law enforcement during a traffic stop. Winners of the contest were announced during the state’s Global Youth Traffic Safety Month Kickoff event, hosted in partnership with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).
Louisiana Highway Safety Commission is engaging nine regional traffic safety coalitions to provide teens the opportunity to produce traffic safety videos tailored to their region. Winners in each region will receive a mini-grant to develop a peer-to-peer training model and a campaign utilizing their video to educate their peers.
Montana State Highway Traffic Safety Office is funding peer-to-peer projects through the state’s Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) members. This builds upon a successful program launched in 2017. Montana will engage additional FCCLA chapters in this statewide effort to help teens work within their communities to promote safe driving messages.
Nebraska Department of Transportation Highway Safety Office is partnering with law enforcement, the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles, local Ford dealerships, and state safety agencies to host an event featuring ride and drive exercises and traffic safety activity stations. The event also will launch a contest encouraging participants to create safety presentations for their peers based on Ford DSFL resources.
Tennessee Highway Safety Office is developing National Teen Driver Safety Week event kits to engage students from high schools throughout the state. These kits include materials and resources for teens to create an educational exhibit and a sign encouraging peers to take a safe driving pledge. Each high school will additionally create an informational video on the state’s Graduated Driver License (GDL) law, to be shared on social media.
“We are extremely grateful for Ford Driving Skills for Life’s continued support of state teen safe driving efforts and commitment to providing crucial resources for states to address this issue,” said GHSA Executive Director Jonathan Adkins. “We look forward to seeing the results of our 2018 grantees’ innovative programs.”
In partnership with GHSA, Ford DSFL has trained more than one million individuals worldwide in safe driving skills since its inception in 2003. In addition to providing these state grants, this year Ford DSFL has held hands-on trainings in Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, and Michigan. Upcoming events include a Summer Tour of the Midwest followed by stops in Massachusetts, Tennessee, California and Arizona. More information and the latest schedule can be found at drivingskillsforlife.com.