SACRAMENTO, Calif. Oct. 20, 2017 – Motor vehicle collisions are the leading cause of death for teens in the United States and a concern the California Highway Patrol (CHP) addresses with its Start Smart program.

The likelihood of a teen being involved in a collision is significantly reduced when high-risk driving behaviors are eliminated.  The free Start Smart class can help eliminate these behaviors by providing teens driver education developed specifically to address risky driving behaviors observed every day by CHP officers.

“The intent of the Start Smart program is to provide new drivers with pertinent information that will help in making smart decisions behind the wheel,” said CHP Acting Commissioner Warren Stanley.  “The program also reinforces that driving is a great privilege that comes with a tremendous amount of responsibility.”

Designed for newly licensed teen drivers and their parents, the CHP’s Start Smart program is a two-hour driver safety class that is conducted throughout the state.  It uses innovative techniques to capture the attention of teens and parents, providing a lasting impression.

The Start Smart curriculum is based on teen driver and passenger behaviors, California’s Graduated Driver License (GDL) law, cultural changes in today’s society, and the need for stronger parental involvement in a teen’s driving experience.  Parents are also reminded of their responsibility to teach their new driver and model good driving behavior.

Parents and teenagers can register for a Start Smart class by contacting their local CHP office.  To locate a CHP office near you, visit, and discover how a free two-hour class can save a life.  For more information about Start Smart and the GDL program, download the CHP Start Smart mobile application, available in the Apple App Store and Google Play.

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.