ICBC steps up funding to teach Island youth about the dangers of risky driving behaviour
March 7, 2017
On average, 940 youth are injured and three are killed in crashes every year on Vancouver Island.* That's why ICBC is providing $25,000 in funding to the Prevent Alcohol and Risk-Related Trauma in Youth (P.A.R.T.Y.) program to allow more than 7,000 youth aged 15 and older to attend one of the 140 sessions across B.C.
This winter and throughout spring, Vancouver Island youth will experience the full journey of a patient seriously injured in a car crash starting at the crash site all the way to rehabilitation. Students will hear about the real-life trauma that results from those who witness it firsthand – physicians, nurses, paramedics, police, firefighters and brain injury survivors.
"This valuable program provides young people with an authentic and hard-hitting look at the impact of taking risks while they're behind the wheel," said Mike Morris, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. "Drinking and driving, for instance, can result in an Immediate Roadside Prohibition, but more importantly it can have a lasting impact on your life and the lives of your loved ones. Hearing directly from health care professionals, community volunteers and trauma survivors will help teenagers see why it's important to take responsibility for their personal safety when driving. Remember: don't drink and drive and leave your phone alone."
"It's about making smart, informed choices and this program arms young people with the knowledge and skills they need to stay safe on our roads," said Todd Stone, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. "Teens are educated that traumatic injuries can be avoided. They learn the potentially dire consequences of not wearing a seatbelt, driving under the influence, speeding, and distracted driving. This 'reality education' has a strong impact because it's real life stories and it makes teenagers recognize the gravity of their choices."
"We're proud to support the P.A.R.T.Y. program," said Mark Blucher, ICBC's president and CEO. "This funding means many young people will experience this important program. It's a key part of our commitment to being actively involved in keeping youth safe across B.C."
"This is an important educational program that Island Health is proud to be a part of," said Dr. Brendan Carr, Island Health's president and CEO. "Students learn that vehicle crashes and traumatic injury can be prevented. As an Emergency Physician myself, sadly I have seen patients with permanent brain or spinal cord injuries, burns, and paralysis – all preventable crashes had drivers considered the consequences in advance."
For more information on the P.A.R.T.Y. program on Vancouver Island, visit: http://www.viha.ca/trauma/party.htm
Editor's note: Media are invited to attend upcoming sessions on Vancouver Island. Please contact Chris Shewchuk at Island Health (250-370-8377) directly to confirm the date 24 hours in advance.
*Youth are defined as aged 16 to 21. Injury data based on 2011 to 2015 ICBC data. Fatal data based on 2011 to 2015 police data.
Lindsay Olsen, ICBC
Chris Shewchuk, Island Health