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10-24-2006: Chevrolet Partners With Safe Kids Worldwide And Cub Scouts To Promote Safety

DETROIT – Cauley Chevrolet in West Bloomfield was selected by Chevrolet to participate in a 10-city pilot to help keep youngsters safe around vehicles. Chevrolet and Safe Kids Worldwide are teaming up with the Cub Scouts to help six-to-nine year-olds learn about vehicle safety. The program kicked off earlier this year in Charlotte and is expanding to 10 pilot cities across the U.S.

“This truly shows the depth and breadth of Chevrolet and General Motors,” says Ed Peper, Chevy General Manager. “We have worked with Safe Kids Worldwide for several years. This is a chance for us to work cooperatively with the Cub Scouts to reach an important demographic – families with boys ages six through eight– and teach them how to make good decisions in and around vehicles.”

The program covers several aspects of safety, including proper safety belt/booster seat usage, how to contact OnStar in the event of an emergency, preventing trunk entrapment, why kids shouldn’t play in and around vehicles, and teaching families to never leave a child alone in a vehicle. By running the pilot in cities across America, Chevy, Safe Kids and Cub Scouts will find out how to expand the program nationwide.

“It’s important to make this a turn-key program,” Peper says. “Our goal is to learn how we can make this program work smoothly for Chevy dealers, individual Cub Scout packs and Safe Kids Worldwide.”

The program is designed to teach kids about vehicle safety, but Chevy and Safe Kids will also learn from the experience. As each child begins the program, a short questionnaire will measure what kids already know. At the end of the program, their knowledge will be measured again to see how much information was learned. Cub Scouts who complete the program will receive a wallet safety card and an Automotive Safety patch. At the July program, participating scouts demonstrated a significant improvement in their knowledge of automotive safety topics. And in an adult evaluation, 98 percent of parents rated the event as excellent or very good.

Reaching Cub Scouts is an important way to promote a family oriented automotive safety experience. Children who “graduate” from traditional child safety seats need to be evaluated to ensure they are not skipping booster seats. “Booster seats provide an important next step for kids who are too big for a child safety seat but still do not fit properly in an adult safety belt,” said Lorrie Walker, the training and technical manager for Safe Kids Worldwide.

“Cub Scouts are the typical age of a child who has graduated too soon, and we expect to find many Scouts who should be in a booster but aren’t. This program will allow us to educate booster age kids, their families and pack leaders who often transport several children in their vehicles.”

Cub Scout Division Director for the Boy Scouts of America Sam Thompson says the new program fits right in with Cub Scout goals.

“All across America on any given day of the week, volunteers and parents are transporting their young boys from activity to activity,” Thompson says. “It is our desire to educate all of our members and leaders to help facilitate the safe delivery of these young people to their various destinations. Cub Scouting has always been about education, and we see this opportunity as a logical step in helping our boys and their parents.”

Chevrolet and Safe Kids will announce new locations for the program soon.