It seems like every day of the week has its national day: National Blueberry Muffin Day (July 11), National Take a Hike Day (November 17). And while we’re not all enjoying a blueberry muffin on our daily hike (though I wouldn’t be opposed), one activity that many of us across the nation take part in nearly every single day of the week is driving. And for most of us, that starts in our teens with getting our learner’s permit and license, when we are just beginning to navigate the rules of the road.
This week (October 21 through October 27) is National Teen Driver Safety Week. At Boys & Girls Clubs of America, we’re proud to have partnered with The UPS Foundation for nearly a decade to drive change in teen driving behaviors. After all, who knows their road rules better than UPS drivers? Delivering 5.1 billion packages a year, 15 million a day, this team of brown-clad employees not only regularly practices safe driving, but honors those who prove that safety training works. UPS’s Circle of Honor includes more than 10,000 UPS drivers who have driven for 25 years or more without an avoidable auto accident — together they’ve logged 14 billion miles of safe driving, enough to circle Earth at the equator 562,000 times.
That’s a high bar to work toward! But with UPS Road Code, our teen safe driving program, we’re paving the way. More than 125 trained UPS employees serve as volunteer instructors, working with Club teens through interactive classroom-based instructions derived from trainings that UPS drivers go through, as well as time “behind the wheel” on a virtual driving simulator. Currently, more than 35,000 teens have graduated from UPS Road Code at 63 Boys & Girls Clubs across the nation. When you compare that with the startling realities of teen driving — motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of death for U.S. teens, accounting for more than one in three teenage deaths* — that’s potentially more than 35,000 lives saved.
We’re proud to share that The UPS Foundation has renewed Road Code through 2020, ensuring thousands more will learn their road rules from the very best. After all, the first step to a great future is getting there safely. To learn more about the program and partnership, visit BGCA.org/RoadCode.
* Centers for Disease Control and Prevention