Driving home lessons

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  • Three Tazewell (Ill.) County teens, who died in this fiery accident, were among the 15 fatal accidents in 15 months from late 2005 into ‘06.
    Three Tazewell (Ill.) County teens, who died in this fiery accident, were among the 15 fatal accidents in 15 months from late 2005 into ‘06.
  • Dearborn, Mich. — The award-winning Ford Driving Skills for Life takes a rest from the road in Tazewell County, Ill., during its U.S. National Tour, next week.

    Driving Skills for Life hands-on training

    What: Ford Driving Skills for Life, no-cost, classroom, simulated impaired driving training for newly licensed drivers.
    When: Thursday, May 18
    8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.: Hands-on drivers training for Tazewell County teen drivers
    10 a.m.: Press conference
    Where: Illinois Army National Guard hanger, 2323 S. Airport Road; Peoria, Illinois
    Registration: County Deputy John Shallenberger, 309 478-5652

    Tazewell teens to learn safe driving skills

    This visit marks 10 years of engagement between Ford DSFL, Tazewell County, the Illinois Department of Transportation and Illinoisians statewide, as participants in the Operation Teen Safe Driving program.

    Fifteen county teens died in vehicle crashes during a 15-month period from late 2005 into ‘06, prompting in the county’s selection, two years afterward, as a test site for the safety program.

    The 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m., May 18, hands-on driver’s training at the Illinois Army National Guard for Tazewell County teens is program’s legacy.

    Ford DSFL joined those providing advanced driver training to these newly licensed drivers. Through funding and hands-on training, helping raise awareness in local schools and the broader community, success came to the initiative. So much so, the program expanded statewide. Now, more than 100 schools participate each year. Since the ‘07 start of the program, IDoT data shows a 50 percent reduction in teen fatalities.

    The program is available to students throughout the United States and the world. Select your state from the events calendar. After clicking on the green “View more” button, register for event notification via the Notification List link. If you are outside the current DSFL areas check out the online Academy.

    Key driving program leaders are scheduled to discuss future necessary actions and celebrate 10 years of progress. Jim Graham, global manager of Ford Driving Skills for Life, is slated for the May 18 events, along with Tazewell County Sheriff Robert Huston; Michelle Watson, parent of Jeremy Andrew Hoss Watson, killed in ’06 Tazewell County automobile crash; and Paul Lorton, bureau chief, Bureau of Safety Programs and Engineering for IDoT.