Our New Driver
This time last year I was relatively stress-free, then my daughter turned 15 and a half in May. You know what that means right? In California, it means teens can head to their local Department of Motor Vehicles to take the test to acquire a driving permit. With a driving permit, my daughter could practice with a licensed driver over 25 for 6 months prior to driver’s training classes and getting her license. Insert panic here [ahhhh]!
She remembers some questions on the test she missed were things such as the weight/age requirements for kids in car seats and something about towing a boat. Completely necessary information for a beginning driver, not really. In fact I’ve been driving for 26 years and I don’t know the complete rules on those things. In the fall, she took three 2-hour behind the wheel courses with a local driving school and the main objective was learning to share the road. The more practical things like putting gas in the car, maintaining fluid levels, and checking the tire pressure is left to us as parents to fill in the blanks.
On December 1, our daughter was presented with a license to drive. I’m proud of my daughter, she is responsible and cautious and has helped the family ten-fold by driving herself and siblings to school and extra-curricular activities. In the last three months she said, “I’ve gained the most confidence and learned the most about driving with constructive advice from you guys [mom and dad].” And, that’s after over $400 worth of driver’s education. This is where Michelin comes in and is making a change!
Beyond the Driving Test Campaign
Partnering with the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), Michelin has started the Beyond the Driving Test campaign offering resources for parents, teens, and their peers on tire maintenance safety and road readiness.
Right now only 16 of the 50 states have tire safety information in their driver’s education materials (even though my daughter honestly doesn’t recall any). And more shocking, only 7 of those 16 even require teens taking a driver’s education course before getting their license!*
Automobile accidents are the No. 1 killer of teens in America, with more than 5,000 deaths each year.** Of the 2.2 million vehicle accidents taking place annually, 12 percent are among inexperienced drivers and involve tire-related issues such as insufficient tire tread or improperly inflated tires.***
The two organizations will be working with national groups and state organizations to meet the goal of having all 50 states include some form of tire safety information in their individual driver’s education curricula by 2020. Just last week, Michelin and the FIA awarded ADTSEA (the American Driver and Traffic Safety Education Association) a $100,000 Teen Road Safety Grant to add tire safety to their core curriculum.
Improving road readiness for teen drivers is crucial in my life. I’m eager to see this more practical and very important change in our driver’s education program as my son will be learning to drive next year, and my youngest daughter a few years down the road. As a parent of a new driver on the road, I worry daily. Anything that can be done to improve her chances to come home safe and sound each and every day is something I stand behind 100%!
To read more about the Beyond the Driving Test campaign, the Teen Road Safety Grant, and to download an excellent Glove Box Guide, visit beyondthedrivingtest.com.
I was honored to be a part of this sponsored promotion with SheBuysCars. Personal stories and opinions are completely my own.