(Ashville, OH) - AAA is rolling out a new program targeting teen drivers.
The program, called CinemaDrive, is aimed at curbing crashes and distracted driving ahead of what AAA calls the "100 deadliest days for teen drivers." There are more crashes involving teens between Memorial Day and Labor Day than any other period during the year.
The program debuted at Buckeye Valley High School last month and was offered at Teays Valley High School last week. It's a multi-sensory, 3D, interactive program.
"You actually get to experience an actual situation," said Teays Valley senior Teedah Chhuom. "I feel like that helps us understand it more."
During the program participants have the opportunity to make decisions, express opinions and provide valuable information for their educators, all in complete anonymity.
Nicole Perry, a junior, was involved in a crash earlier this year when another driver ran a stop sign and hit her vehicle. She spent time in and out of the hospital recovering. It has given her a new perspective.
"I probably would have answered 'no' to wearing my seat belt before, but now I do because if I didn't I probably would have been through my window that day," she said.
This will be the first summer behind the wheel for junior Tony Seagraves. He knows that riding with other teens can be a major distraction and only does it when he has to.
"CinemaDrive is a very important educational program for teenagers, due to the fact that distracted driving is very dangerous," said Chhuom. "We all need to be aware of this issue and try to prevent it from happening."
Teens have the highest crash rate of any age group, and car crashes remain the leading cause of death for teens.
AAA Ohio's Kimberly Schwind says this program is the first of its kind in the nation. They are piloting the program, but Schwind says other AAA clubs have expressed interest in picking it up and trying it.
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