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Class aims for young drivers' safety

Grand Forks Police officers will teach a series of defensive driving classes for ages 14 to 24 starting Thursday evening. The program, Alive at 25, is sponsored by the National Safety Council and aims to prevent motor vehicle crashes involving yo...

Grand Forks Police officers will teach a series of defensive driving classes for ages 14 to 24 starting Thursday evening.

The program, Alive at 25, is sponsored by the National Safety Council and aims to prevent motor vehicle crashes involving young people.

"The purpose is to let the younger drivers know that they are at risk and we want to keep them injury free and fatality free," said Bill Vasicek, community safety coordinator for Altru Health System.

The NSC reports that students who complete the course are 96 percent less likely to be killed in a vehicle crash.

The four-hour, interactive class teaches that:

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n People between the ages of 14 and 24 are more likely to be killed or injured in a vehicle crash.

n Inexperience, distractions and peer pressure make driving more dangerous.

n Speeding, using alcohol or drugs while driving increases the risk of death or injury.

n Making a commitment to driving safely has personal, legal and financial benefits.

Vasicek said that in some cases, students who take the class can get discounts on their auto insurance.

"Generally, you get a good enough discount where it pays for taking the class," he said.

Students also can have three points taken off their driving records.

More information:

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Who: Drivers ages 14 to 24.

What: Defensive driving courses.

Where: Grand Forks Police Department, 122 S. Fifth St.

When:

5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday.

5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Aug. 21.

8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sept. 20.

How: Register and pay the $45 course fee online at www.ndsc.org (click on "Alive at 25").

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For information, call the North Dakota Safety Council, (701) 223-6372.

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