The Maria's Message campaign had more than 100 teens attend its first Teen Defensive Driving Event on Wednesday.
Teens were given classroom and driving lessons aimed at teaching safety on the roads.
Instructors from the Mid-Ohio School and representatives from Kenda Tires worked with the teens throughout the day in the parking lot of Thirty-One Gifts.
Mid Ohio driving school instructors worked with each teen, practicing driving on wet pavement, controlling a spin out and changing lanes quickly.
Teen driver De’Jhona Ferguson says quick lane changes were tough at first. She kept hitting the cones, but in the end, got the hang of it.
The event was free of charge for teens who pre-registered on the Maria's Message website. Similar events will be held over the next two months.
Maria Tiberi, daughter of 10TV sports anchor Dom Tiberi, was killed on September 17, 2013, in a tragic distracted driving accident near Hilliard, Ohio. In February, 10TV launched “Maria’s Message” through a series of public service announcements.
“When you're dealing with kids that are 15 and half, 16, 17-years-old, they don't have the experience,” said 10TV’s Dom Tiberi. “They're getting the experience today and they're getting the understanding today, here's how you can correct it and here's how you can keep yourself safe.”
WBNS-10TV, Tiberi and his wife, Terri, along with their children, Dominic and Kelsey, have committed to raising awareness of distracted driving, while promoting defensive driving through Maria’s Message.
The last event will be in September. Gov. John Kasich recently designated September as "Safe Driving Awareness Month" in honor of Maria Tiberi.