National Safety Council announces 2013 Teen Driving Safety Leadership Award winners

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via PR Newswire

ITASCA, Ill., Sept. 25, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Safety Council today announced Beth Schuerman of the Alaska Injury Prevention Center, Impact Teen Drivers and Traffic Safe Communities Network of Santa Clara County as the winners of its 5th annual Teen Driving Safety Leadership Awards, supported by the General Motors Foundation

Car crashes are the leading cause of death for teens. The Teen Driving Safety Leadership Award recognizes exceptional contributions that prevent car crashes, injuries and deaths involving teen drivers. This year's winners stood out from more than 50 nominations for the reach of their initiatives and measurements shown on the initiatives' impact on teen driver safety.

"These organizations have worked tirelessly to help protect our youngest and most vulnerable drivers," said Janet Froetscher, president and CEO of NSC. "Their efforts have yielded measurable change which will no doubt help in our ongoing efforts to curb teen driver crashes and save lives."

The Alaska Injury Prevention Center, used two programs, Teen Buckle Up and Raise Your Voice, to reduce the numbers of car crashes involving teens who were either impaired or not wearing seat belts. Teen seatbelt use in Anchorage increased 26 percent since the Teen Buckle Up program began in 2006.  

Sacramento-based Impact Teen Drivers is a nonprofit organization that, alongside numerous partners, delivers more than 250 presentations about the dangers of reckless and distracted driving to more than 300,000 high school, middle school and elementary school students. An evaluation from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that Impact's What Do You Consider Lethal?program increased the rate of seat belt use among teen drivers to greater than 96 percent.

Traffic Safe Communities Network is a community collaborative comprised of more than 70 traffic safety stakeholders and guided by the Santa Clara County Public Health Department. TSCN strives to prevent and control traffic-related fatalities and injuries as well as save healthcare and property costs through research-based best practice approaches. Santa Clara County ranks consistently in the top 15 percent of counties with the fewest injuries and fatalities involving drivers younger than 21 who have been drinking.

"Recognizing significant accomplishments in the area of teen driver safety is critical," said Mike Robinson, vice president, Sustainability and Global Regulatory Affairs, who serves as a GM Foundation Board Member. "These organizations have gone above and beyond to help young drivers and they deserve recognition from the National Safety Council for their work on this issue, which is so important to us all."

More detail on each of this year's honorees can be found at Representatives from all three organizations will receive their awards at the annual NSC Defensive Driving Courses Awards Banquet, scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 28 during the annual NSC Congress & Expo in Chicago.

About the National Safety Council 
Founded in 1913 and chartered by Congress, the National Safety Council,, is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to save lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy. NSC advances this mission by partnering with businesses, government agencies, elected officials and the public in areas where we can make the most impact – distracted driving, teen driving, workplace safety, prescription drug overdoses and Safe Communities. Safety+Health magazine, the Council's flagship publication, is a leading source of occupational safety and health information.