NTSB Press Release

National Transportation Safety Board
Office of Public Affairs


October 6, 2003

Washington, D.C. --The National Transportation Safety Board will examine the state of driver education and training programs in a public forum on October 28 - 29 in Washington, D.C. The forum will explore the strengths and weaknesses of driver education programs and what can be done to improve them.

The Board began looking into driver education programs as a result of a January 2003 accident in Montana where three young people and their instructor were killed when the 14-year old student driver lost control of the vehicle and swerved into oncoming traffic. "Motor vehicle crashes are the number one killer of young people," said NTSB Chairman Ellen G. Engleman, "The best way to protect the lives of young drivers is to arm them with the right education, the right resources and the right restrictions to make them better, safer drivers." The Safety Board's focus on driver education is an extension of its emphasis on Graduated Driver's Licensing programs, one of the Board's Most Wanted Safety Improvements.

Representatives from the American Driver and Traffic Safety Education Association, the Governors' Highway Safety Association, the Driving School Association of the Americas, the American Automobile Association, the National Safety Council, and state Departments of Education and Transportation are among the forum participants. Discussions will focus on state programs, their effectiveness and needs, teaching standards and techniques, the use of simulators, driver education programs overseas, and current initiatives to improve the safety of young drivers. Driver education teachers, students and recent graduates of driving programs will share their perspectives on the effectiveness of current driver training methods.

The forum will begin at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, October 28, 2003, in the NTSB Board Room and Conference Center at 429 L'Enfant Plaza, Washington, D.C. Information about the forum and the agenda are available on the Board's website, http://www.ntsb.gov/events/symposia.htm.

NTSB Office of Public Affairs: (202) 314-6100



The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent federal agency charged with determining the probable cause
of transportation accidents, promoting transportation safety, and assisting victims of transportation accidents and their families.