NEW YORK, (November 18, 2013) — The first year a teenager gets their driver’s license will be one of the most dangerous of their lives and while cars today are safer than ever, automobile crashes are the leading cause of death for teenagers.
Today, Toyota launched TeenDrive365 (www.TeenDrive365.com), a driving safety platform to help families navigate the critical first year of a teen’s independent driving. Designed to amplify the teen driving programs and resources Toyota has offered for over a decade, the initiative aims to help foster an ongoing dialogue between parents and teens through engaging online tools, expert advice and tips, local events and social media.
One of TeenDrive365’s goals is to inspire parents to model safer driving behaviors for their teens. This premise of bringing parents and teens together to encourage safe driving is based on scientific research from a national study Toyota conducted with the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute. The study found a significant correlation between how parents and their teens drive, suggesting that parents are the biggest influence on how a teen will behave behind the wheel.
The study was sponsored by Toyota’s Collaborative Safety Research Center (CSRC) (www.toyota.com/csrc), which works with leading institutions on auto safety research, including projects designed to better understand teen drivers’ risks and behaviors and identify effective recommendations to help keep them safe.
“We like to say that driver’s education begins the day a parent turns their child’s car seat around to face forward,” said Dr. Tina Sayer, Toyota Collaborative Safety Research Center Principal Engineer and teen safe driving expert. “It’s so important that parents understand that the actions they take and the expectations they set for young drivers each day are powerful factors in encouraging a lifetime of safe behavior behind the wheel.”
Resources Designed To Help Parents and Teens Jumpstart a Dialogue about Driving Safety
TeenDrive365 features a collection ofresources and tools, which can be accessed online at www.TeenDrive365.com, including:
TeenDrive365 was previewed at a TEDYouth event in New Orleans this past weekend, where teen influencers and TEDYouth’s own "iReporters" interviewed their peers about distractions and driving and then reported their findings on stage at the event. Attendees also had the opportunity to test the TeenDrive365 driving simulator to experience, first-hand, how distractions impair their ability to remain safe behind the wheel.
TeenDrive365 serves to raise awareness of the teen safety programs Toyota has offered for more than ten years. In addition to ongoing research from the CSRC, Toyota Driving Expectations (www.toyotadrivingexpectations.com) provides hands-on, real world defensive driving courses that go far beyond what is taught in standard driver education courses, while Toyota Teen Driver (www.toyotateendriver.com) offers free online teen safety resources to parents, teens, educators and schools. Arrive in Style (www.teenvogue.com/arriveinstyle), is a safe driving campaign with Teen Vogue to raise awareness of the dangers of distracted driving among teenage girls and inspire them to make a mutual commitment with their mothers to drive safely.
For more information, please visit www.TeenDrive365.com.
The National Safety Council
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