CALTRANS STREET SKILLS
Caltrans steers a new driver teen education program launched during National Teen Driver Safety Week
Caltrans has introduced a new campaign called ‘Street Skills’ as an extension of the ‘Slow for the Cone Zone’ safety campaign and designed to help save the lives of drivers and workers on California highways and freeways.
‘Street Skills’ targets teen drivers and challenges them to a higher awareness in driving more safely in construction and maintenance highway work zones. Teens are constantly added to the number of new drivers and are four times more likely than experienced drivers to be killed in a car accident, according to the California Office of Traffic Safety.
The ‘Street Skills’ campaign is on a statewide promotional tour to visit over 40 California high schools this fall. National Teen Driver Safety Week is recognized this year from October 19 to 26.
District 7, along with ProPose, a ‘Slow for the Cone Zone’ contractor, took the ‘Street Skills’ driver safety program tour to several high school campuses one week in early October, where at lunch time events, a school assembly and even during a Friday night football game, Marlene Martinez and Jayne Crowder of Caltrans Public Affairs Office set up the “Slow For The Cone Zone” orange tent. Students took the Work Zone Safety quiz on laptops.
The six high schools who benefited first-hand from District 7’s attendance were Pacific High in Oxnard; Palisades High in Pacific Palisades; Franklin High in Los Angeles; Azusa High in Azusa; Lakewood High in Lakewood and Pioneer High in Whittier.
Among the teenage population, there is little awareness of the risk to drivers and passengers in roadway worker cone zones. The goal of ‘Street Skills’ is to get safety information in the hands of teens and to encourage them to think of roadway safety first. Many marketing professionals agree that it is difficult to get the attention of teens in order to impart this message though traditional advertising.
Marketing professionals would also agree that a sure way to attract the attention of teens is to give away a car. So, ‘Street Skills’ is holding a sweepstakes where a 2009 Toyota Scion xB is the Grand prize. No state dollars are being used for the sweepstakes; the car was donated by Clear Channel Communications. Another prize is $1,000 towards car insurance. Twenty additional winners will receive roadside assistance for one year.
To enter the sweepstakes, teens must currently be registered in a California high school and must complete and score 100 percent on an educational work zone safety quiz found online at www.slowfortheconezone.com
California teachers are eligible to enter the sweepstakes and will receive one additional entry for each student’s entry that names him or her as their instructor.
The last day to enter the sweepstakes is November 14, 2008. Caltrans employees and immediate family members are not eligible to enter the sweepstakes.
In the new campaign, Caltrans has partnered with other traffic safety organizations to create a more engaging driver educational program.
These partners include California Highway Patrol (CHP); Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV); California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS); California Automobile Association (AAA); Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD); Recording Artists, Athletes and Actors Against Drunk Driving (RADD); Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD); Jiffy Lube; Big O Tires; and Harv’s Car Wash.
Statewide, Caltrans distributed 900 Drivers’ Education Teacher kits to driver safety classrooms and private driving schools. The kits include a ‘Street Skills’ poster; a safe driving video game; AAA’s DriverZED; a DVD and other promotional items donated by partners, including a fact sheet on costs of Driving Under the Influence (DUI) offense.
So, go ahead and take the quiz at www.slowfortheconezone.com just to see how well you score. The website has an educational cone zone safety video and other safe driving resources available to the general public.