Itasca, IL - The National Safety Council today announced the winners of its new Teen Driving Safety Leadership Award recognizing exceptional contributions to preventing deaths and injuries involving teen drivers. Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of teen fatalities, accounting for 38 percent of all teen deaths in the United States.
The award, sponsored by General Motors, recognizes demonstrated and consistent commitment to teen driving safety leadership, including:
- Leadership of efforts to adopt best practices that save lives and prevent injuries
- Enacting legislation based on proven safety methods
- Enhancing public understanding of teen driving safety issues; and
- Advocating proven prevention strategies
The awards were presented by Janet Froetscher, NSC President and CEO, on Oct. 24 at the National Safety Council’s Defensive Driving Course Awards Banquet.
"These three honorees were selected from 40 nominees across the nation because of their demonstrated commitment to use proven methods to save the lives of teens," Froetscher said. "These award winners represent excellence from the public sector, private sector and young people themselves," Froetscher said. "The scientific evidence is clear that Graduated Driver Licensing, parental involvement, primary seat belt laws and peer-to-peer teen programs each have measurable impact in saving lives. These three honorees used one or more of these proven methods in their programs. We are confident their efforts are preventing crashes and injuries and saving lives."
"General Motors is pleased to work with the National Safety Council on the launch of this important new national recognition program," said Michael Robinson, GM Vice President of Environment, Energy & Safety Policy. "GM commends the winners of these awards for their efforts to improve teen driver safety."
The three honorees are:
The New Jersey Division of Highway Safety led the state's Teen Driver Study Commission, which issued a report that takes a holistic approach to improving teen driver safety. The report includes 47 recommendations, 14 of which are considered essential for stemming the tide of teen crashes, including a first in the nation requirement that Graduated Driver License (GDL) holders display a decal on their vehicles. The decal, as well as several other changes to the GDL law, were subsequently enacted by the New Jersey Legislature and signed by Governor Jon Corzine earlier this year. These changes give New Jersey one of the best GDL systems in the nation. The award also was given in recognition of the Division's efforts to educate teens and parents.
This corporate program educates parents about the risks of teen driving through a unique and compelling video, “In the Blink of an Eye.” The video discusses behaviors that parents can model as children are growing up and the actions parents should take as their children reach driving age. It is an exemplary example of how employers can educate their employees and others about safety issues that affect them outside of work.
To view the video, click here
This group of high school students is recognized for leadership in developing Public Service Announcement campaigns to educate peers about reckless driving and seat belt use, developing a social networking campaign to teach their peers about teen traffic safety, advocating the passage of GDL laws and the Minnesota primary seat belt law, creating a rap song to encourage seat belt use, engaging college athletes to speak at their high school about seat belts, creating a rap song “texting and driving is a crime,” and joining with a statewide group of students who rallied at the state capitol in support of the Minnesota primary seat belt law.
The National Safety Council (www.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.