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Directions in Highway Safety, Fall 2008 Cover Page Download Newsletter pdf
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Fall 2008 | Vol. 11 | No. 3

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New Technology Makes Teens Safer Drivers

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Ford Motor Company recently announced a new technology to help parents encourage their teens do be safer drivers. The tool, called MyKey, lets parent enable a variety of different safety features in a vehicle, including limiting speed and audio volume, while a teen is driving it.

The MyKey system comes preprogrammed with certain default safety features, such as traction control and seat belt reminders. Parents can program their teens' keys with a variety of additional safety features, such a limited top speed of 80 mph or speed chime alerts at 45, 55 or 65 mph. When the teen driver inserts his MyKey into the ignition, the vehicle recognizes the transponder chip in the key and automatically turns on the appropriate safety features.

Parents surveyed indicated that they may allow their children to use the family vehicle more often if it were equipped with the technology. This additional driving time could help teens develop their skills in a more controlled setting. While teens surveyed were skeptical at first, a majority indicated they would not be opposed to using MyKey if would lead to greater driving privileges.

MyKey will be a standard feature on the 2010 Ford Focus, and Ford plans to also offer it on many other Ford, Lincoln and Mercury models.

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