IRVINE, Calif., Dec. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Kia Motors America (KMA) recently partnered with B.R.A.K.E.S. (Be Responsible And Keep Everyone Safe) Teen Pro Active Driving Course to provide more than 150 teenagers ranging in ages 15 1/2 to 19 with advanced training to respond to real-world driving scenarios. B.R.A.K.E.S., with KMA's support — which included a fleet of 2013 Kia Rios — provided the instruction at no cost in an effort to prevent injuries and save lives by educating teens and their parents about the importance of responsible driving habits.
"Kia's partnership with B.R.A.K.E.S. is a reflection of the company's commitment to give back to the communities in which we do business," said Michael Sprague, executive vice president, marketing & communications, KMA. "Reinforcing the importance of responsible driving in the first few months of licensure is essential to reducing the number of teen motor vehicle crashes and making the roads safer for everyone."
B.R.A.K.E.S., a 501 c3 charity based in Charlotte, N.C., has provided safe driving instruction courses for more than 8,000 students in the U.S. and Canada. The school offers nearly four hours of hands-on training and a very low student-instructor ratio to ensure personal attention. The curriculum includes an array of defensive driving techniques and raises awareness of the dangers of distracted driving. Parents participate in the courses alongside their teens to ensure safe driving techniques are reinforced following the session.
"More than 5,000 teenagers lose their lives each year across the country in traffic accidents," said Doug Herbert, B.R.A.K.E.S. founder. "The support of companies such as Kia is invaluable to reducing the number of injuries and saving lives through advanced training."
Training includes the following:
- Accident Avoidance/Slalom: The two-part course simulates an animal or object jumping out in front of a car. It forces students to make a split second reaction to help negotiate a quick, evasive lane change without losing control. Students must navigate their vehicle around cones while focusing on weight transfer, hand positioning and eye scanning.
- Distracted Driving: In 2009 it was estimated more than 5,400 people died in crashes that were reported to involve a distracted driver and about 448,000 people were injured1. The course demonstrates the danger that cell phones, text messaging, and other distractions can pose.
- Drop Wheel/Off Road Recovery: The drop-wheel recovery course teaches students how to effectively recover from a drop-wheel situation by regaining control of the car and safely returning to the roadway.
- Panic Stop: Teens often lack the experience needed to judge a safe following distance. The panic stop course instructs students on proper techniques to help stop a vehicle in the shortest distance while maintaining control. Students experience firsthand the effects of ABS and its ability to help keep the wheels from locking while pulsating brake pressure.
- Car Control and Recovery: A wet skid pad simulates maintaining control on moist roads. Students learn how to recover from both over-steer (rear wheel) and under-steer (front wheel) skids.
About Kia Motors America
Kia Motors America is the marketing and distribution arm of Kia Motors Corporation based in Seoul, South Korea. KMA offers a complete line of vehicles through more than 755 dealers throughout the United States and serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and LPGA. In 2011, KMA recorded its best-ever annual sales total and became one of the fastest growing car companies in the U.S.2 Kia is poised to continue its momentum and will continue to build the brand through design innovation, quality, value, advanced safety features and new technologies.
NHRA Top Fuel Dragster driver/owner, Doug Herbert, lost his two sons, Jon (17), and James (12), in an automobile accident in January 2008. To help prevent other parents from enduring the pain of losing a child, Jon's classmates helped Doug form the non-profit organization, B.R.A.K.E.S. (Be Responsible And Keep Everyone Safe). The B.R.A.K.E.S. mission is to prevent injuries and save lives by educating teenage drivers about the importance of safe, responsible driving with classroom and practical "hands-on-the-wheel" driving instruction.
1 See http://www.distraction.gov/research/PDF-Files/Distracted-Driving-2009.pdf.
2 Based on 5-year cumulative growth between 12-month retail sales for periods ending November 2007 and November 2012 of all U.S. automotive brands.
SOURCE Kia Motors America