Monday March 26, 2012

On the Road

Graduating Safely

Kevin Brooks to speak from experience about drinking and driving at GW Graham May 27

Released by ICBC


ith the graduation and prom party season around the corner, ICBC’s road safety speakers are touring the Lower Mainland this spring to share their personal, heart-wrenching stories with local high school students to remind them of the importance of making smart driving decisions.                   

                                             Brooks talks about how driving drunk changed lives forever.

On average, 1,200 youth are injured and four are killed during April, May and June in the Lower Mainland every year.* Car crashes remain the number one preventable cause of death for youth in B.C. because young drivers tend to be inexperienced, over-confident and take more risks behind the wheel.

“Our speaker program is one way that we’re reaching out to students because we care about their safety and we want to help them make smart choices when it comes to driving or getting in a car with their friends,” said Fiona Temple, ICBC’s director of road safety. “Our road safety speakers tell students about their first-hand experience of horrible crashes that have had profound effects on their lives.”

Cara Filler is the top female North American speaker on traffic safety, risky behaviours and peer pressure. She’s spoken at more than 2,200 assemblies and impacted the lives of more than 1.5 million students around the world. Cara will be speaking at numerous schools in the Lower Mainland in May and June.

“Approximately 16 years ago, my sister made a choice that killed her,” said Cara. “And I became a part of a club that I never wanted to be a part of – the I-lost-somebody-I-cared-about club.”

From his wheelchair, Kevin Brooks tells the story of how he lost his best friend one Saturday night while driving drunk in Surrey. Kevin has appeared at more than 1,000 high schools across North America and has thousands of youth followers on his blog, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter sites. Kevin will be visiting schools in the Lower Mainland from March to June.

“There is nothing better I could be doing with my time or my life than talking to students about road safety, I believe that 110 per cent,” said Kevin. “I’m out there to help young people stay alive and make good choices in their lives.”

For more than 15 years, ICBC road safety speakers have been sharing their stories with B.C. high school students. Teachers can select a speaker for their students by watching the speakers' video clips on and using the resource guide.

“Kevin’s message is delivered in such a personal, heartfelt, yet factual way that grads are spellbound,” said Kathryn Pipke, Fraser Heights Secondary vice-principal in Surrey. “He speaks their language and opens their minds to the fact that, if this could happen to him, it could happen to any one of them. It is a strong message and an important one for them to get on the eve of their graduation from high school.”

In addition to the road safety speaker program, ICBC invests in various road safety programs including the Your Ad Here contest, K-10 school curriculum and B.C.’s graduated licensing program.

Kevin Brooks will be speaking May 24 at GW Graham, Chilliwack at 1:16 p.m. Call to confirm date and time.

*Statistics above are based on 2006 to 2010 ICBC and police data. Youth are defined as age 16 to 21.


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