Teens practice driving – with and without distractions

MILWAUKEE — It was likely the only time a group of Milwaukee teens was encouraged to text and drive. State Farm and the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee teamed up to host a “Celebrate My Drive” event at North Division High School Saturday.

Teens took turns driving a golf cart through an obstacle course. Each driver went twice; the first time was distraction-free, the next while texting.

“I thought about if you text and drive, nothing will happen but since this happened, now I know why,” said Keontay Avery.

It’s what organizers hoped to hear. According to State Farm data, teenage drivers are four times more likely to die in a car accident than those 25 or older. The Boys and Girls Club encouraged its teenage members to stop by.

“We have over 35,000 club members and a lot of them are teenagers, 15,16, 17 years old – the target age for getting their license or soon to be getting their license,” said Jacqueline Zeledon.

Of course, drivers don’t need a device to be distracted. The driving ended early Saturday when a young lady wrecked the golf cart. She wasn’t texting but was chatting with her friend before losing control of the cart. Organizers hope it provided the perfect example of why young drivers need to take training seriously.

State Farm held similar events in more than 300 other places Saturday.

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