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For Immediate Release,
12/15/2007
Contact:
Kathy Lane
Communications Director
(630) 775-2307
kathy.lane@nsc.org
 

Midas Partners With National Safety Council to Promote Safe Teen Driving; Updates Shops’ Image

Chicago, IL – Midas automotive service shops in the greater Chicago area are partnering with the National Safety Council to promote safe teen driving by offering complimentary copies of the council’s “Family Guide to Teen Driver Safety,” a comprehensive 68-page booklet containing specific action steps to help manage the learning process of teen driving from beginner to independent driver levels.

Parents and teenagers may pick up a copy of the booklet at participating Chicago area and northwest Indiana Midas shops, where families may also request a complimentary courtesy check on the car the teenager is driving. The booklet contains a $5 discount coupon for an oil change on the teen’s car.

“Midas dealers are eager to help educate parents and teenagers on the importance of safe driving behavior and to help ensure that the car the teen is driving is safe,” said Rick Dow, Midas senior vice president and chief marketing officer. “Teenage driver safety fits in well with the Midas system’s commitment over the years to help keep motorists safely on the road.”

Midas has a history of commitment to safety issues, both through its daily business of servicing vehicles for safe operating performance and through participation in nationally recognized public service safety programs. Midas and its dealers are credited with helping increase awareness of the proper use of child car seats in the 1990s through comprehensive national and local car seat education and safety programs, with support from many safety groups including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and NSC.

Teen driver safety is a significant national issue currently. According to NSC statistics, young drivers aged 16 to 20 represent just six percent of U.S. drivers, but they are involved in nearly 14 percent of fatal vehicle crashes.

“We commend the Midas dealers in the Chicago area for helping to increase awareness of the teen driving issue,” said John Ulczycki, director of NSC's transportation safety group. “The ‘Family Guide’ contains specific safety recommendations designed for parents to discuss with their teenagers, including 30 to 50 practice hours of behind-the-wheel training with an adult, restrictions on the number of passengers and nighttime driving, proper use of safety belts and, of course, prohibiting the use of alcohol.”

Many Midas shops in the Chicago area recently have participated in a re-imaging program with bright red shop exteriors and updated interiors as the first market in the United States to launch the company’s upgrades.

“The attractive new look of the Midas shops makes them more visible from the street and provides an enhanced look of professionalism,” Dow said. “Midas shops are a center for vehicle safety and reliability, so the teen driver program is a natural extension of our safety efforts.”

Dow encourages Chicago area motorists to visit the shops to see their new appearance, for automotive services and for a complimentary copy of the teen driver booklet and vehicle courtesy check. He said the re-imaging project, the first system-wide appearance upgrade in seven years, will roll out across the Midas system in North America over the next 18 months.

The Midas shops’ new exterior features a yellow-and-black graphic to accent the new bright red fascia along the building’s roofline. The shop interiors feature a new pledge board outlining the shop’s service commitment to customers, as well as a new menu board detailing Midas’ full complement of repair and maintenance services. There also are new service panels with educational information on the workings of brakes, maintenance, exhaust and tires. Midas is marketing the new shop image as “A Fresh Face on Full Service Car Care.”

Midas was founded as a muffler replacement business in Chicago in 1956. Midas has become one of the world’s largest providers of automotive service, offering brake, exhaust, maintenance, tires, steering and suspension services at nearly 2,600 franchised, licensed and company-owned Midas shops in 19 countries, including nearly 1,800 in the United States and Canada.

The National Safety Council (nsc.org) saves lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the roads through leadership, research, education and advocacy.

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