BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - Don-Tre Driving School, a full service professional driving school, recently opened their "new storefront" in downtown Berkeley Heights. Donald and Peter Carpenter, the school's owners, have been teaching students throughout New Jersey since 1988 -- with a primary purpose of educating teens to save lives and reduce motor vehicle accidents.
Don-Tre Driving School prepares students to drive through driver theory classes and behind-the-wheel experience. With safety of teen drivers as their primary focus, the school has recently partnered with Share the Keys - educating teens and parents, alike, to cultivate safe driving attitudes and behaviors.
This orientation for parents is designed to reduce teen driver crash risks by increasing parental involvement. "Parents are key to safe teen driving," said Peter, "assuming they're a good role model behind the wheel."
Parents have to reinforce through their actions, said Peter. Studies have shown that parenting styles have a direct impact on teen driver safety: teens whose parents set rules and pay attention to their driving activities in a helpful, supportive way are half as likely to be involved in a crash.
"Research has also revealed that teens who requested permission to use the car were fifty percent less likely to be involved in crashes. Drivers whose parents controlled the keys were also less likely to violate the provisions of the 'Graduated Driver License,'" stated the Share the Keys resource guide.
The school prides themself on customer service and their commitment to the kids. "We strive to meet the scheduling needs of our clients, as well as their instructional needs," said Peter.
- Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for young people in NJ and across the nation between the ages of 16 and 20.
- Teen crashes are most often the result of distraction, inexperience, speeding, and/or failure to yield.
- The most dangerous time on the road for teen drivers is between 3 and 6 p.m., followed by noon and 3 p.m.
Facts about the NJ Graduated Driver License law:
- may not drive between 11:01 p.m. and 5 a.m.
- may only transport one passenger, unless the driver is accompanied by a parent or guardian or the passengers are the driver's dependents (children).
- can not use a cell phone or any other hand-held wireless electronic devises.
- must ensure that they and all of their passengers wear seat belts.
- must display the GDL decals on any vehicle they drive.
- face a fine of $100 for a violation under the GDL law.
- may not plea bargain any point carrying offense.
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