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Teens' Need For Speed Fuels Alternate Driver's Ed

Ball, Kimberly
FORT WORTH (CBS 11 News) ―

    * Texas Driving Experience

Traffic accidents are the leading cause of death for teens in Texas. According to AAA, more than 40,000 teenage drivers are injured every year in wrecks.

A Flower Mound mom decided driver's education needed a tune up, so she opened her own school at the Texas Motor Speedway.

Dawn Stokes lives life in the fast lane.

"I've been stopped several times for exceeding the posted speed limit," said Stokes.

But it's her job to tame the fast and the furious.

"Things have changed since when I grew up. Traffic has changed, roads have changed. These kids need more education behind the wheel," Stokes said.

That's why Stokes put her high-octane energy, cash and ambition into Texas Driving Experience, a comprehensive driving course taught here at the Texas Motor Speedway.

"If you do what we teach you, the car is nice and balanced, and you change lanes, there's no drama," said instructor Joe Carroll.

All the instructors are professionally licensed race car drivers, and while this might look like fun and games, these techniques will actually save lives.

"It's like anything that you do. You need to learn it, and you need to practice it," says Stokes. "I don't think the more traditional driver's education classes properly simulate those accidents and teach you how to get out of a situation."

Stokes says the driving force behind her ambition is simple.

"Every Sunday morning, you'll open the paper and read about another family whose lives have been changed because of something that very possibly could have been prevented or at least lessened," Stokes said. "I think, being a mother, you want to make sure your kids live to their potential."

Stokes has been recognized nationally for her female owned enterprise and staff of 45 professional race car drivers.

"I think our passion will answer any question about what I look like," Stokes said.

She says despite her need for speed, she plans on taking her time enjoying success.

(CBS 11 News)