The Mahoning Valley chapter of Sports Car Club of America has plans to keep teens safe on the roadways.
The Tire Rack Street Survival program will be held from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 6 in the parking lot across from Paws Town at Boardman Park. It goes one step beyond the traditional state drivers education program by teaching teens, through hands-on training, how to avoid everyday driving hazards, obstacles and challenges on the road.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for U.S. teens. Among those most at risk, the CDC reports that the crash risk is particularly high for teens within the first months of licensure.
"Simple driving errors, avoidable but common among inexperienced teens, cause the majority of fatal accidents," Tire Rack Street Survival officials state.
During the training, students will learn emergency braking and skid control, how to control unintended oversteer and understeer, and how to avoid accidents entirely.
Another part of training will include allowing students the chance to sit in an 18-wheeler semi truck so that they can fully comprehend its blind spots. Students will also witness the detonation of an air bag, so they can understand more what happens when an air bag is deployed and take proper safety precautions.
Training includes both a classroom module and hands-on training, which students will complete in their own vehicles so they can understand the limits of their own vehicles more thoroughly. The cost is $75 per student and will include lunch. The course is open to licensed and permitted drivers ages 15 to 21.
Tire Rack Street Survival is a national non-profit program, founded in 2002 by the BMW Car Club of America Foundation. This is the second year of the program locally.
"It's overdue. It should have been around a long time ago because it saves teenagers lives as far as what happens on the street," said John Gingery of the Mahoning Valley Regional SCCA.