TEENS as young as 14 are getting behind the wheel under a new scheme aimed at cutting young deaths on the roads.
Craig Ramshaw has launched Teendrive in a bid to slam the brakes on the number of accidents involving young drivers.
The Sunderland businessman’s scheme has already proved a hit in schools and now he is taking it on the road as he opens his doors to the public.
He said: “When I was training to be a driving instructor one of the subjects on the course was death on the roads among the young.
“It made me realise there are too many stories of fatal accidents involving young and inexperienced drivers on the roads and gave me the idea to put something in place to educate them.
“This way it means that by the time they can legally drive they will already be used to being in a car and using it and, hopefully, this will make them better drivers.”
Craig, who is based in Grangetown, will be using Gateshead College’s test track, which is at Nissan’s Wearside plant.
The track is 3km long and gives young drivers the perfect chance to get to grips with their skills.
“The idea is that we teach 14-year-olds and over exactly the same syllabus as when they are 17, so it’s giving them early education,” Craig said.
“I’ve been in several schools across Sunderland and I’ve had brilliant feedback so, hopefully, this will be a success too.”
Paul Gough, head of commercial operations at Gateshead College, added: “This is a new facility for the college and further adds to our reputation as a major centre for automotive training services.
“There is no similar facility in the north of England so it provides a unique asset for regional companies, like Teendrive, and can be used for a variety of uses.
“We are delighted to be working with Teendrive and feel that the test track is perfect for their work, helping them to teach practices in an off-road and safe environment.”
For more details on Teendrive, visit www.teendrive.co.uk