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Insight from WFPD: Defensive Driving Course better prepares teen drivers

Riding in or driving a motor vehicle are the two most dangerous activities your teen will ever participate in. Vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death for young adults ages 14-24!

Sign up for a free on-line parent program provided to you by the North Dakota Safety Council to better prepare you to partner with your teen in order to reduce the dangerous risks involved while driving. Crash risks are particularly high in the first few years teens are eligible to drive.

To participate in the free training opportunity you must sign up between June 24 and June 30, by logging into and click on New Student Registration. Enter access code NSM2012. You'll have 30 days to complete the course.

For the younger driver, the North Dakota Safety Council is also introducing Defensive Driving Course-Alive at 25, second edition. This young driver intervention program, available in English and Spanish, zeroes in on drivers between the ages of 14 and 24 - the group most likely to be involved in fatal collisions.This highly interactive four-hour program teaches young drivers how to take control of situations by taking responsibility for their own driving behavior.

Vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death for people between the ages of 14 and 24. The National Safety Council, a leader in driver improvement training for more than 40 years, developed DDC-Alive at 25 to specifically target drivers in this age group.

* Since 1995, more than 400,000 young adults have learned life-saving defensive driving skills through DDC-Alive at 25.

* In a recent study by the Colorado State Patrol, 93% of DDC- Alive at 25 participants said they would change their driving behavior afterwards.

* Courts and schools nationwide use DDC-Alive at 25 in their graduated license and violator programs.

This highly interactive four-hour program encourages young drivers between the ages of 14 and 24 to take responsibility for their driving behavior. Skill practices and on-the-spot defensive driving techniques help change bravado to confidence.

DDC-Alive at 25 teaches young adults that:

* People in their age group are more likely to be hurt or killed in a vehicle crash.

* Inexperience, distractions, and peer pressure cause unique driving hazards.

* Speeding, alcohol, and "party drugs" greatly increase their risk of injury or death.

* As a driver or passenger, they can greatly reduce their risk by taking control.

* Committing to changing their driving behavior makes personal, legal and financial sense. Anyone with questions can call the North Dakota Safety Council at 701-223-6372.