Getting a license is an exciting thing for high school students. It’s a sign of independence. But with constant distractions behind the wheel, many parents fear that their teens won’t take the newfound responsibility seriously.
To help teach teen drivers to drive safely, State Farm Agent Tressa Williams teamed up with the Santa Clara Police Department for a State Farm Celebrate My Drive event on Oct. 19.
“State Farm decided that it was important to really catch teen drivers before and when they’re first getting their license,” said Williams. “We didn’t want to make it scary with the videos, so we call it a celebration – Celebrate My Drive. It’s more about a celebration of crossing that threshold. You get to have a driver’s license now and we are teaching the importance of the responsibility of having a driver’s license. This is an event of celebrating those who are about to get a license and of those who just recently got a license.”
Williams enlisted the help of vendors, who each provided an interactive table to teach teens about the costs associated with accidents and tips on how to care for their cars. Car West Auto Body brought in a dented fender and students guessed how much it would cost to repair. Unique Towing taught participants how to properly check the air in their tires. Glass West explained how small chips in a windshield can turn into large, costly cracks. AJ Auto Detailing talked about car cleaning. William Michael Automotive had students guess the fluid (coolant, brake, oil, windshield wiper, and steering) and SCPD answered questions and had drunk goggles on hand to teach kids about drinking and driving.
“We’re supporting safe teen driving…We’re passing out stickers from MADD and giving information about safe teen drivers from MADD,” said Lieutenant Kurt Clarke. “We’re also asking questions of kids…[and] making sure they’re driving safe.”
At Williams’ tent, students signed up to support their school. As part of the celebration, State Farm will be giving grants to the top small and large vote-getting high schools in the country.
“State Farm is giving away 100 grants to the top 100 schools that make [safe driving] commitments online so that’s why this booth is first and important,” said Williams.
To vote for a local school to receive one of the grants, Santa Clara’s St. Lawrence Academy and Piedmont Hills High School in San Jose had students and faculty at the event, visit www.celebratemydrive.com. Each valid email address can be used to vote once a day between now and Oct. 26.