CRANBERRY (KDKA) — Teens took the wheel for some advanced driver training this weekend at the Manheim Auto Auction in Cranberry.

“They are learning things like vehicle handling, what happens if the car gets loose, how do you control it, recognizing hazards, rather than just panic like a lot of teens do, there are different options, they’re learning speed and space management,” said Jim Graham with Ford.

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The students also learned about the dangers of distracted driving and driving impaired.

The two-day event was part of the Ford Driving Skills For Life Program, created by Ford in 2003. The mission is to educate new drivers and give them the tools and techniques to stay safe.

“Kids aren’t bad drivers, they are inexperienced drivers and the more we educate them in the very beginning, the better they are going to be as drivers in the future,” said State Trooper Robin Mungo.

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The teens, from all over the Pittsburgh area, said being in the car with a professional driver was eye-opening.

“We got in the car and the instructor told us that we were to floor it, pedal to the medal and there was three lights and two of them would turn red and one of them would turn green, we had to swerve into the lane that was green and so basically its about hazard recognition,” said student Matt Galbreath.

They learned valuable lessons that will stay with them on the road. This is especially important, considering vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among teens.

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“Even when you’re going 40 miles per hour, accidents can happen out of nowhere, it doesn’t really matter where you are, anything can happen all the time,” said student Ryan Kendrick.