San Diego parents can take control of teen's safety on road

Posted at 7:16 AM, Jun 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-08 11:54:54-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - The summer months are the deadliest for teen drivers, with the stretch of time from Memorial Day to Labor Day being dubbed the "100 deadliest days" by the American Automobile Association.

"The main reason is that there are more drivers out on the road and a lot of them are younger drivers because they're out of school, both college and high school," said John Hauschild, owner of Teen Road To Safety San Diego. "It requires everybody to give more space between the vehicles in front of them and try to create greater visibility so you can respond to situations that change, sooner."

Hauschild said not all teen driving safety courses are created equally.

"If I were unscrupulous, I could sign a document saying I trained you and if you pass a test I could turn you into an instructor in a day," said Hauschild.

Hauschild recommends parents call programs ahead of time and ask to speak to a director. He said you should ask about instructor history and how long they've been in business. You should also make sure they are insured and find out for how much.

Hauschild runs his program a little bit different from the rest. All of the program's instructors are former law enforcement.

"What they tell me is that they want to give back, share their experiences, share their insight to young drivers," said Hauschild. "One of the things that makes them great instructors is they've seen so much carnage out there on the roadway."

During the course, students drive a Ford Mustang. Hauschild said these vehicles are harder to drive and can prepare students for whatever vehicle they drive after.

The organization also puts on an advanced driving course for young people who already have their license. Taught by professional race car drivers, students must react to obstacles like cones and water on the road.

One of the most important lessons he teaches is on distracted driving.

"Cell phone usage kills more people than drinking and driving, and people should be equally offended, if not more so, by someone on their cell phone," Hauschild said.

Hauschild also has a nonprofit, Project Teen Safety, where he offers affordable courses to families in need every Saturday.

This Sunday he'll be offering an advanced course for licensed drivers.