MPI’s Driver Z program and National Teen Driver Safety Week both focused on reducing collisions

Teen drivers’ behaviours are at the forefront of two initiatives aimed at reducing collisions ─ Manitoba Public Insurance’s new Driver Z program and National Teen Driver Safety Week (October 20-26).

The MPI-developed Driver Z online was officially rolled out to students on September 30, following a successful beta pilot involving 20 schools. Over the next few months, nearly 5,000 students in 170 high schools will get to experience the new and innovative learning tools featured in Driver Z.

“It’s driver education for the next generation,” said Maria Minenna, Manager Driver Education & Training, Manitoba Public Insurance. “Young people today are curious, tech savvy and deep thinkers. With this in mind, we created a new online platform and curriculum that calls on them to use these skills throughout their journey in developing long-term safe driving habits.”

The most significant change from the previous driver education program is the added online component. Classroom time was reduced by 14 hours and instructors and students now complete their work within the Driver Z application. There is also the final class in the course called the Capstone Project, which tasks students with creating an engaging presentation that ties in the Road to Zero vision.

“Road to Zero is a traffic strategy that sets a goal of zero road fatalities,” said Minenna. “The Capstone Project challenges students to come up with new and engaging ideas on topics such as positive traffic safety culture, hazard awareness, rules of the road, and technology influence to help make the Road to Zero vision a reality. We’ve seen some incredibly innovative ideas from students in the form of board games, songs, poems and even skits.”

National Teen Driver Week

Teen drivers make up only about five per cent of Manitoba drivers, but are involved in about 10 per cent of all injury collisions and fatal collisions each year, said Satvir Jatana, vice-president responsible for Communication Services, Manitoba Public Insurance.

“Education, awareness and driver behaviour are key components in reducing road fatalities in Manitoba,” said Jatana. “Young drivers are impressionable and we hope to encourage them to be better drivers to make our province one of the road safest in Canada.”

National Teen Driver Safety Week ─ organized by Parachute Canada ─ is a good time for all teen drivers in the province to evaluate their driving behaviours and work on reducing teen driver involvement in collisions.

Parachute Canada is a non-profit organization dedicated to injury prevention. The organization’s goal for Canadians is to have a long life, lived to the fullest. More information can be found on their website:

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