B.R.A.K.E.S Driver Training
Teen fatalities behind the wheel happen every day and much too often. No one understands this reality more than Doug Herbert, who lost both of his sons – 17 year-old James and 12 year-old Jon, to a car crash. His grief led to his resolve to create a driving program, B.R.A.K.E.S (Be Responsible and Keep Everyone Safe), to prevent other families from experiencing similar heart break by teaching young drivers more conscientious and confident skills behind the wheel.
B.R.A.K.E.S. is a Guidestar Gold-rated 501(c)(3) charity and AAA Approved Driving School that offers students hands-on experience in the dangerous situations they may find themselves in on the road.
Some of the real-life simulations include using a slalom curriculum to teach elevated steering control, a Wheel Drop-Off Recovery Exercise to teach retaining control when the vehicle drops a wheel off a highway shoulder, a Panic Stop Exercise to give teens safer and more controlled responses when braking in an emergency, and an exercise that teaches the skills necessary to maintain or regain control in wet or icy road conditions.
“B.R.A.K.E.S. has trained more than 22,000 teens all across the country in the last eight years. Together with their parents – who are required to attend with their teen and frequently learn as much or more than the kids – that’s more than 50,000 safer drivers on the road because of B.R.A.K.E.S. I think that’s a fitting tribute to my sons, Jon and James, whose lives continue to make a difference through the charity,” said Founder Doug Herbert. “And we’re not slowing down. North Carolina continues to be our home base and one of our busiest locations with monthly schools at zMax Dragway in Concord as well as regular events at the State Trooper training facility in Raleigh, and we added a school Charleston, South Carolina, for the first time this year, with the help of the Rabon Family, who lost their son Tripp in a car crash about a year ago.”
B.R.A.K.E.S dedication to preventing injuries and saving lives by training and educating teenage drivers about the importance of safe and responsible driving means taking driver’s education beyond the conventional method. It is a free, hands-on, advanced driver training program taught by professional instructors who train the FBI, secret service, state troopers, rave for a living and/or perform stunts in movies.
Each weekend event includes four identical sessions to allow parents and teens to pick one that will fit into their busy schedules, and each session includes four hours of training, starting with a short, 45-minute classroom presentation followed by lots of driving time in a fleet of new cars provided by Kia.
For more information, including nationwide locations and dates for upcoming events, and to register for a school, please visit: www.putonthebrakes.org. (Please note: Registration requires a deposit of $99 to secure a seat, but it’s fully refundable upon arrival at the school.)