"I had no fear in speeding. I was your average cocky little high school kid who thought they were invincible," says teenage driver Julie.
"I never thought it was going to happen to me. I was Superman," says Matt, also a teen driver. "He knew I wouldn't have respect for the car. I don't pay insurance or anything. It was basically a joyride for me."
Kids are brave. They feel they are invincible. They take more chances and unfortunatly, their inexpereince will not allow them to take chances. It takes four to five years to get the exeperience to avoid accidents," adds Julie.
That's why Farmers Insurance is now offering discounts to teen drivers who learn the meaning of Y.E.S. You're Essential to Safety.
"The parents call us up and say, 'I want to add Sabrina to our policy.' We say great. We need to have her come in. We have a program we want her and you, as a parent to go through, then they complete the video and do a workbook that asks questions in relation to the video," says Farmer's Insurance Agent Jim White.
The video involves teenagers, such as Julie and Matt, that were involved in traumatic accidents. It gives new drivers an education to see how easy it is to wreck their lives. "I hit a divet in the road. The car went into a spin. I hit a tree on the side. The car split in half. The rear end of my car hit another tree. The three in the back were all thrown from the car," says Julie. "I did have brain injury, I blew my spleen up. My pancreas had some injury to it. My liver and kidney were both punctured by my ribs so they basically had to sew all my body parts back together."
Not only does the Y.E.S. program show new drivers the consequences of reckless driving. It also gives their parents a five percent discount on their insurance policy. "The average policy on a youthful driver runs about $1300 for full coverage," says White. "That gives them a 65 dollar credit for sitting in here for thirty to forty-five minutes." A savings in your wallet that could save your teenager's life.
"We've had 21 people go through it since August just to give you an idea," White adds. "That's how many drivers we've added to our policy that have been put onto the streets of Lubbock."
The Y.E.S. program includes a booklet that allows parents to lay down the laws of safe driving with their teenager. Once the program is completed, the driver receives a certificate and the discount is applied to the policy.
For NewsChannel 11's Consumer Connection, I'm Sharon Maines.