Ford helps Saskatoon drivers gain Driving Skills for Life

Earning your license is not the same as finding your confidence on the road. Which is why Ford Canada and Jubilee Ford were proud to help over 60 drivers of all ages build their skills at the Ford Driving Skills for Life workshop.

Course Outline

On Tuesday, September 25th, the drivers learned about vehicle handling, hazards and collision avoidance on a secure course. The closed course allowed the trained driving instructors to simulate real-life driving scenarios in a risk-free environment.

An instructor gives pointers to a participant on collision avoidance.

An instructor gives pointers to a participant on collision avoidance.

Saskatoon Police Services also demonstrated the effects of driving under the influence using ‘fatal vision’ goggles. These goggles simulate what one participant called, “a total blackout”, and illustrate the dangers of operating a vehicle while impaired. A member sat in the passenger seat and provided colourful commentary as each participant tried the ‘fatal vision’ goggles.

A participant drives with 'fatal vision' goggles with an Saskatoon Police Service member.

A participant drives with ‘fatal vision’ goggles with an SPS member.

“Oh, that was the neighbour’s cat you just ran over,” the member said as one driver unknowingly drove over a pylon.

A Ford Escape navigating the hazard recognition driving course.

The program was separated into three stations, each with a unique course and a Ford automobile. Vehicle handling used a Ford Mustang outfitted with a skid simulator to teach the participants about over-steering. Flashing lights and a Ford Escape were used to teach collision avoidance at high speeds and participants struggled to drive a Ford EcoSport using ‘fatal vision’ goggles.

A participant learns about vehicle handling in a Ford Mustang.

Dave Drimmie, lead instructor of Ford Driving Skills for Life says the advanced course is intended to go beyond what is taught in standard driver’s ed classes. “The course is challenging but it’s good to see everyone doing well. There is like a light that goes on when they get out of the vehicle.”

A Successful day on the road

This is the first Driving Skills for Life workshop in Saskatoon but organizers say they are excited to come back. Participants were also the first in Canada to experience the Wheel Swap virtual reality experience. Wheel Swap hopes to train drivers to be more aware of cyclists by sharing the road from a cyclist’s perspective.

“Safer drivers mean safer roads.” Dave Drimmie says, “And we are excited to do our part to make every city in Canada a little safer.”