First and foremost, parents want to ensure the safety of their children but, unfortunately, they can’t watch over and protect them every second of the day. This is especially true once teens are able to drive. The Drive Safe Challenge program helps educate young drivers and their parents on the importance of being alert on the road and gives them the tools and skills to avoid potentially dangerous situations while driving.
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LOS ANGELES, Calif. (January 15, 2018) – Today, the Tampa Bay Lightning and Mercury Insurance joined forces at AMALIE Arena for the “Mercury Insurance Drive Safe Challenge,” a one-day driving school immersion course designed to equip young drivers with the knowledge and skills they need to be safe on the road. The program was developed by Mercury Insurance to help reduce the leading cause of teen fatalities – car collisions – and make roads safer for everyone.
Parents and their teens from the Lightning High School Hockey League took part in the event, where they learned collision avoidance and car-handling maneuvers from professional driving instructors and participated in an interactive classroom session led by the Tampa Police Department officers.
“We were extremely excited when Mercury Insurance approached us about partnering in their Drive Safe Challenge event,” Tampa Bay Lightning CEO Steve Griggs said. “Mercury shares our commitment to bettering the Tampa Bay community. Helping prepare teens to drive should be a priority for all of us, because it can not only keep them safe, but it will make the roads safer for everyone.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Florida is third in the nation for fatalities caused by teen driving accidents.
“I ran over half of the cones on the distracted driving course,” said Nicolas DeMalteris, 17. “I had to text while driving. I don’t think it would be very smart to drive [distracted] on the road, I wouldn’t do it ever again.”
Jaci Butler, 18, drove a Honda Civic fitted with plastic type rear wheels designed to simulate a car spinning out of control. “I feel like now that I’ve experienced it, I won’t be perfect, but I’ll know what to do,” Butler said.
The Mercury Insurance Drive Safe Challenge, initially launched in 2016, is a free defensive driving program that includes hands-on driving skills training and an interactive classroom session.
“First and foremost, parents want to ensure the safety of their children but, unfortunately, they can’t watch over and protect them every second of the day. This is especially true once teens are able to drive,” said Erik Thompson, vice president of advertising and public relations for Mercury Insurance. “The Drive Safe Challenge program helps educate young drivers and their parents on the importance of being alert on the road and gives them the tools and skills to avoid potentially dangerous situations while driving.”
Mercury Insurance has created a wealth of free information and tools that parents and teens can use to help prepare for life behind the wheel. Visit http://drivesafe.mercuryinsurance.com to access tips, videos, quizzes and much more.
About Mercury Insurance
Mercury Insurance (MCY) is a multiple-line insurance organization predominantly offering personal automobile, homeowners and commercial insurance through a network of independent agents in Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Texas and Virginia. Since 1962, Mercury has specialized in offering quality insurance at affordable prices. For more information visit www.mercuryinsurance.com or Facebook.com/MercuryInsurance and follow the company on Twitter.
About the Tampa Bay Lightning, Tampa Bay Sports & Entertainment
Jeff Vinik purchased the Tampa Bay Lightning, the leasehold rights to AMALIE Arena and some adjacent properties in March, 2010 and immediately initiated a complete brand and business transformation of the franchise aimed at delivering a world class organization to the community and its fans. In 2016, ESPN ranked the Lightning as the No. 1 team in professional sports, lauding the organization for its unrivaled fan experience, guest services and performance on the ice.
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