04/23/2018 Release from DRIVE SMART Virginia:

RICHMOND, VA – Over 26,000 crashes involved a distracted driver last year in the commonwealth, according to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles. Each one of these crashes was preventable. For this reason, DRIVE SMART Virginia requested and was awarded funding from The Power of Change, a charitable program from Rappahannock Electric Cooperative. DRIVE SMART Virginia will use this funding to bring an interactive teen driving program to four high schools in the Cooperative’s service area.

The educational programming includes a hands-on, in-vehicle distracted driving simulator, impaired tricycle course, and additional programming from community partners such as local law enforcement agencies.

“Through teen focus groups, we have found that interactive education is what really makes a lasting impact on younger drivers,” says Janet Brooking, executive director of DRIVE SMART Virginia. “We are grateful that Rappahannock Electric Cooperative understands the importance of teen driver education and the life-saving lessons we help bring to Virginia high schools.”

Twenty-nine teenagers died and 5,912 were injured on Virginia roadways last year.

“We are happy to support DRIVE SMART Virginia to help make the communities we serve safer,” says Thomas Reed, Vice Chair of the Community Awareness of Rappahannock Electric Charity, Inc. (C.A.R.E). “We look forward to seeing how the funds from The Power of Change will be used to make a positive impact on our youth and our roadways.”

DRIVE SMART Virginia will be visiting Culpeper County High School on April 26, Eastern View High School on April 27, Louisa County High School on May 1, and Albemarle High School in October.

About DRIVE SMART Virginia
DRIVE SMART Virginia is a nonprofit organization charged with raising awareness and changing driver behavior in order to improve the safety of the roadways of the Commonwealth. We work to improve the lives of all Virginians through our public information and education initiatives. Founded in 1995, the organization is led by a diverse board representing safety advocates, the insurance industry and law enforcement, among others. Our mission is advanced by fostering community partnerships, creating educational campaigns, designing and distributing educational materials, making presentations, attending outreach events, and advocating for traffic safety initiatives. Learn more about DRIVE SMART Virginia by visiting www.drivesmartva.org.

About The Power of Change
Spare change really adds up. Each month, thousands of REC members voluntarily donate to The Power of Change by rounding up their monthly electric bill to the next whole dollar or an amount of their choice, or by making a one-time donation. These funds are donated to make a positive impact on our local communities.