Follow up to my Sept. 2015 blog post: Driving with strangers while ridesharing….

In the time that has elapsed since my last post on the dangers of getting in a car with a total stranger see it here: more tragic events have been in the news. In Michigan an Uber driver named Dalton claimed that a “devil figure” on the Uber app was controlling him and driving him to kill on the days he committed the murders as stated by police. see the article here:
Michigan Uber Driver Pleads Guilty to Murdering Six People






Dz4mTmWWoAUBYJxIn another incident Actor and Comedian Terrence K Williams posted a picture of himself in the hospital with a neck brace on and said, “Hey guys! It’s hard typing this. I have fractured neck and back some spine issues. My lyft Driver almost flew off the bridge. I’ll be staying at the hospital for a few days!” see article here:



With more time to see that the ridesharing experience has its real pitfalls I would only use the service as a last resort and have a mace canister on hand at all times. My experience has been that they drive bad and tailgate while their looking at their phones and now the stories are out that they can actually be a mass murderer and we wouldn’t know it.

5 Star Students do more then pass their drive test

Here are some jubilant 5 Star Driver students who just passed the drivers test. Their new found freedom is the source of their joy. The beauty of completing the 5 Star Driver video program is that these young drivers are way over trained past the minimum requirements of the DMV drive test they just completed. A student of ours today emailed us to say that he is a new licensed driver. He thanked us for the “exemplary drivers training”. I responded congratulating him and asked him to grade how hard the drive test was. On a scale of 1 to 10, ten being the hardest. He responded a 1, only because the examiner smelled real bad. So once again the dumbed down 8 minute drive test showed this young driver that getting your license is not the only goal in this game.

20190207_145033 imagejpeg_0Jenna-1

Autonomous Vehicles Are Hitting Road Blocks – Literally

Tesla Model X driver dies in Mountain View crash –
If Self driving vehicles were suppose to come to the rescue in our modern day world where humans drive worse than ever the Autonomous Vehicle technology is accumulating it’s own death toll. This recent article states: A Tesla vehicle is at the center of another tragic crash, and the company is coming under renewed scrutiny over safety concerns as a result. The driver of a Model X has died after his electric SUV collided with a median barrier on Highway 101 in Mountain View, regardless of the causes, the crash highlights the uncertainties surrounding the safety of electric cars, especially as they introduce autonomous features.

It is my opinion that the amount of money being spent on developing self driving cars could be spent in real drivers training and education. Coupled with more serious fines and legal ramifications for the blatant law breaking so many drivers do on a daily basis, i.e. red light runners, non hands free cell phone users, tailgaters, speeders, etc… Here is an example of superior drivers training with one of our video lessons showing a new driver where to keep their attention while driving between a wall and a semi truck on the freeway, a common fear of many drivers.


Illegal Immigrant Allegedly Kills Texas Cheerleader in Thanksgiving Day DUI Crash –

This news article reveals the new reality in America that brain dead drivers are running dead red stop lights. In this one of all too frequent stories a 14 year old was killed after a car driven by an illegal alien allegedly crashed into the back of her grandparents car. As a driving instructor who is out in traffic for many hours each week I can attest to the frequency in which people are blasting through solid red lights. Since I began driving 40 years ago drivers have always pushed through sometimes late yellow lights. This new dangerous trend of going no matter what on the red light is unacceptable. That type of wreck is most often deadly and if not, permanently disabling. The reasons are many, texting, people are actually face timing while driving, our elderly have strokes and heart attacks while driving, the rampant prescription drug use, drunks are still out there and now in my state of California the new legalization of marijuana will take its toll. The one factor that can be tracked statistically but no one mentions, is the allowance of 3,000,000 illegal aliens getting their licenses in the last three years. Many come from countries that have no right of way rules let alone Stop or Yield or Merging signs. So until I become King for a day to change some things we have a video lesson called Traffic Check that trains drivers how to spot and have a chance to survive this huge danger out on our roadways. Watch the video below.

Driving with strangers while ridesharing….risky?

uberdriverUber promotes the speed in which you can hail a ride using their one tap to ride feature on the app.. Lyft says with just one tap, get matched with a friendly, background-checked driver and that sounds assuring as mentioned on their website. Every driver is screened for criminal offenses. The criminal background check goes back seven years and includes national and county-level databases, as well as national sex offender registries. That is important but it is still a stranger picking you up in their car. Most ride-sharing companies have policies on screening each drivers driving record at the DMV. They automatically disqualify an applicant for major violations in the past three years (e.g. driving on a suspended license, reckless driving) but allow anyone who has no more than three moving violations in the past three years (e.g. accidents, traffic light violations) This means your ride-sharing driver could have been cited for traffic violations or been involved in as many as three accidents before picking you and or your family up to drive you where you want to go. No guarantee that your driver is anywhere close to being a 5 Star Driver. A serious consideration is that the criminal background check is done on a new drivers initial hiring, never to be re addressed again. The same is true for a driving instructor of which is my profession, the license renewal process is every three years and requires a written test, a physical and the paying of fees. The criminal background check and a printout of the instructors D.M.V. driving record is never asked for again.

Too many drivers speed and tailgate and your Uber or Lyft driver could be one of them. This is a major cause of the majority of rear end collisions and a sign of a 1, 2,3 star driver. Does your Uber driver use their signals on a regular basis because as a licensed driving instructor who is in traffic six hours a day my informal survey observes that 2 out of 10 drivers do anymore. It is important that the stranger people get into a car with for a lift somewhere is a decent human being but also a qualified driver. The video driver training program was developed to raise the standard of drivers in all lines of work and in every household. The sad irony is that drivers are worse than ever while cars are safer than ever.

The rating system with the ride-sharing services rates punctuality of the driver, cleanliness of the car and professionalism. This is done after the ride has been given which is much too late if a wreck was to happen or the person wasn’t a decent human being. The drivers also have a rating system for their passenger’s, one through five stars. A car is rated for its crash survivability rating 5 star being the best. So all this rating of people and automobiles is well and good but cars are crashing at an alarming rate because the true skill level of the individual drivers is not taken seriously. The 5 Star Driver video series is to show parents and their young drivers before they get jaded and sloppy how true skilled and proper defensive driving is implemented. Instead of needing a crash proof car or someday a car that drives itself. Our driving protocol in America has been so dumbed down that it is time for us as a collective to train better drivers as a whole whether they be your next lift across town or not.

Teaching Teenagers How To Drive

When it comes to teaching teenagers how to drive two things make it difficult. Hire a teenager while they still know everything. Yea teenagers and young adults can be know it alls. Parents are not always the best teachers. Here are fine examples of these situations from the Creating A 5 Star Driver video training program. This new driver gets distracted by the conversation and rolls her stop. And then is a bit pretentious about it. Following will be another clip of the same new driver who rolls her stop again. This time she realizes it and admits that that is what her parents do.

Clip 1

Instructor: Left turn here.

Student: IT’S ONE WAY!

Instructor: AMAZING! Do you see how you find these things? You caught it. Pat yourself on the back. Complete stop. stop.

Student: I did complete stop. …

Instructor: Okay. Okay. Are you safe? Because they don’t have stop signs.

Clip 2

Student: Thanks. The roads were a little windy I guess.

Instructor: And right turn. Which is good.

Student: Yea.

Instructor: Did you ever stop?

Student: Uh, no.

Instructor: So you just blew right on through it just like mom and dad right?

Student: Yea.

Online Video Drivers Training

Drivers today pass a 10 minute drive test and do insanely dangerous things like what you are about see. Watching the video driver training lessons at are a super way to prepare young drivers to survive out there.

Many mistakes were made in that crash for sure! Please know that people are running dead red stop lights. 5 Star Driver has a lesson on traffic checking at intersections.

Instructor: Okay. Scan the intersection. Make sure no one is going to blast through it and kill you.

Student: Okay.

Instructor: If it saves your life one time is it worth it?

Student: Yea.

Host: In the last video, Mr. Cullington mentions that drivers will blast through and kill you at green lights. Here is a crash test video that shows the force of impact on these types of crashes.

Instructor: Good. I always check my mirror when go to brake. Green light. Good, here we go. Give me a little lookey and see if any one is being stupid. Good.. here we go.