CHP offers classes to make driving safer for teens

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) Teen drivers can take part in the Start Smart Program, a safe-driving course put on by the California Highway Patrol.

The next program will be 5:30 p.m. July 24 at the Mojave Air and Space Port. The next day, also at 5:30, the program will be presented at the Stallion Springs Community Service District in Tehachapi, according to the CHP's Mojave office.

The most recent statewide data, from 2010, shows there were more than 57,000 drivers between the ages of 16 and 19 involved in crashes, with the teen driver at fault in 67 percent of those, the CHP said.

"The first year behind the wheel for a teen driver can be one of the most dangerous times of their life. Teens are far more likely to be killed in a vehicle collision than in anything else," said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow in a news release. "Developing safe driving habits is the first step toward avoiding a collision."

Call Officer Ed Smith at the CHP Mojave office at (661) 824-2408 for more information.