Driver Distraction – Don’t Type a Comment on This Article if You’re Driving
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Ford hosted another Driving Skills for Life driving camp in Washington D.C. just before a two-day summit created by the U.S. Department of Transportation on the topic of distracted driving. The connection of the two is a natural. The Ford Driving Skills for Life driving camp educates and trains teens on safe driving, and the U.S. government found that in 2008, the age group with the greatest proportion of distracted drivers was the under-20 age group. In fact, 16 percent of all under-20 drivers in fatal crashes were reported to have been distracted while driving. Vehicle crashes are the top killer of teenagers in America, claiming nearly 5,000 lives each year. Additionally, teens account for three times as many fatal accidents as other drivers, according to the U.S. government.

In an effort to reduce teen crashes and fatalities, the Ford Driving Skills for Life driving camp was created in 2003 in association with the Governors Highway Safety Association.® It is one of the nation’s most comprehensive teen-driver safety programs. This free, safe-driving event went well beyond typical driver education courses.

Participants were given instruction on safe-driving techniques from some of the nation’s top professional driving instructors. They also practiced these techniques in a safe environment. The techniques focused on four key skill areas: speed management, space management, vehicle handling and hazard recognition. Experts have identified the lack of these skills as the cause of approximately 60 percent of vehicle crashes for newly licensed drivers ages 16 to 19 years old.

As a way of demonstrating the impact of distracted driving, participants were asked to text while driving through a course of cones, and then to answer handheld phones. The number of cones knocked over increased dramatically compared to when the drivers kept their eyes on the course instead of texting or talking on handheld devices.

You can learn more about Ford Driving Skills for Life by clicking here.

One of the technologies that is available on some Ford models to help avoid distracted driving is the SYNC® system. Please see the fact sheet below to learn more about the features of SYNC.
SYNC Overview

In addition to the Ford Driving Skills for Life driving camp, Ford’s recently introduced MyKeyTM technology helps parents encourage teenagers to drive safely through features that limit a vehicle’s top speed and audio volume, and encourage safety-belt usage. The information below provides a complete overview of the features MyKey offers.
MyKey

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0 COMMENTS ON THIS ARTICLE
Malissa Hrasna Amazing!!!!! As I was reading the story on SYNC system. I became more and more interested in this system. I do want to install one into my Ford Eddie-Expedition 1999. I call it "Baby," she's been real great to me. I think she's due for a treat...... Then, started reading the "Mykey" Wow. I have two kids coming up to that time of hair pulling, and me white knuckling the dashboard. This would be the perfect item needed for safety and control. Thank you and keep up the amazing work. Hunnybunny40
3 year(s) ago via
Tony Glaser Your article on driver distraction was great. With the increasing tendency in urban and suburban jurisdictions for speed limits to suddenly change (i.e., decrease), frequently without advance warning, as well as the increasing use of speed cameras in these same areas, motorists need to keep their eyes on the road, observing traffic signals and signs, as well as scanning other vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, crosswalks, etc. They do not need to be constantly watching the side of the road for changes in speed limits and speed cameras and monitoring the speedometer on the dashboard. SOLUTION: What is needed is a local speed limit GPS (or bar code) signal, linked to a vehicle speedometer, such that when the vehicle is exceeding the speed limit, a light or message appears on the dashboard warning the driver to be aware of the situation and to react appropriately. This, of course, would require modifications to speed limit signs as well as GPS/barcode reader capability in the vehicle along with associated comparison circuitry and dashboard display output. I hope that Ford Motor Co. can take this idea and do something with it.
4 year(s) ago via
Chris Hughes This is brilliant! Thank you guys for being innovative. One of the students in my public speaking class gave a speech on the dangers of texting and driving and didn't have a solution. Now there is one! I think the younger generations will probably be looking to have something with voice recognition/talk to text in the car. I'm no techie so have no idea how hard it would be but I know Dragon Naturally Speaking has the text to speech. Chris Hughes
4 year(s) ago via
John Woods Wow, I would just love to get my 16 year old into that program!
4 year(s) ago via
This discussion is missing your voice.

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