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ICBC speakers reaching out to youth to prevent crashes this grad season

April 26, 2016

With the graduation and prom party season in full swing, ICBC's road safety speakers are touring B.C. high schools to share their personal, heart-wrenching stories with students and remind them of the tragic and life-changing consequences of taking risks while driving.

On average, 32 youth aged 16 to 21 are killed in crashes each year in B.C. During graduation season from April to June alone, on average, six youth are killed.

In B.C., 39 per cent of young drivers in fatal crashes were speeding, 27 per cent were impaired and 22 per cent were distracted.

“For many teenagers, getting their driver’s licence represents freedom and independence, but there is also a great responsibility that comes with it,” said Todd Stone, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “ICBC road safety speakers help connect with youth through their personal experiences and motivate them to think twice before taking risks behind the wheel.”

"Graduation marks an important milestone in the life of every student, but a car crash can change that in a moment," said Mike Bernier, Minister of Education. "The road safety speaker program is an investment in the well-being of our students and the continued safety of our roads."

"Unsafe choices related to driving and being a passenger in a vehicle remains the top risk to the lives and health of youth," said Mark Blucher, ICBC's president and CEO. "We want to get students talking about the dangers of distracted driving, speeding and impaired driving and help them make safer choices."

For the past 19 years, ICBC road safety speakers have been sharing their stories with approximately 50,000 B.C. high school students every year.

ICBC is committed to working with youth, parents, educators and community groups to help reduce crashes, identify the risks of the road and help young drivers develop strong decision-making skills.

You can find video clips of the speakers and more details on their presentations on ICBC also invests in various road safety programs for students including K-10 school curriculum and B.C.'s graduated licensing program.

Editor's Note: Media are invited to these upcoming presentations in the Lower Mainland, Southern Interior, Northern B.C. and on Vancouver Island.

Regional statistics:

  • On average, 12 youth are killed in crashes each year in the Lower Mainland.
  • On average, nine youth are killed in crashes each year in Southern Interior.
  • On average, eight youth are killed in crashes each year in the North Central region.
  • On average, four youth are killed in crashes each year on Vancouver Island.

Note: all data referenced is police-reported data based on the five-year average from 2010 to 2014. Youth are defined as ages 16 to 21.

Media contact:
Sam Corea