New Driver Magnets

1B Canvassback Ct, Berlin, MD 21811

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We were mentioned in the Costco Connection

We were mentioned in the Washington Post

We were mentioned in the Examiner.Com

... From the Costco Connection:

New drivers get a break

picture of Jackie Kurts holding a New Driver Magnet

WHEN THE OLDER of Jackie Kurtzs two sons learned to drive, she asked the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) for a ROOKIE DRIVER bumper magnet for his car. The MVA had given out the magnets in the past, to urge drivers to give newbies a break. But to Costco m ember Kurtzs disappointment, the MVA had run out of funding for the program.

Kurtz saw the value of the magnets and wanted one for her son. She set out to have one made, only to discover that printing just one would cost close to $100. Stickershocked, Kurtz had an idea: If she wanted the magnet, she reasoned, other parents must want them too. So Kurtz, a travel consultant with no design experience, designed black-and-yellow magnets that said, NEW DRIVER, PLEASE BE PATIENT. Then she had 200 magnets made. Word of mouth spread about the magnets, parents started to order them and she was in business.

Business got a huge boost when Washington Post transportation columnist Dr. Gridlock mentioned the magnets in his column. I was inundated with orders. For the first time, I put together a notebook of letters and thank-yous. Some people sent donations to help me keep running. There was clearly a need for the magnets, Kurtz says. Her business had a need for office supplies, too, and Costco was, and is, her go-to supplier.

Dr. Gridlock mentioned the magnets again and caused a second upswell of orders. The wave of support inspired Kurtz to build a website (newdrivermagnets.com) and take online and mail orders. Shes also offered the magnets to parent-teacher associations (PTAs) as fundraisers, allowing the PTAs to sell the magnets and keep a percentage of the profits.

The new-driver magnets arent just for kids, Kurtz quips: “I had a man who was new at driving his motor home order one, and older drivers order them too.”

Maria Bellos Fisher

... From the Post:

"Dear Dr. Gridlock,

I have two 16 year old drivers in training. At the motor vehicle administration office in Gaithersburg, I was able to get a free magnetic sign, about 3.5 x 15 inches with yellow and white stripes that reads, "Rookie Driver" in black letters.
It is very visible and easily transferred to an alternate vehicle. It does seem to make a difference.

-Romana Nixon, Damascus

Those signs were funded by a grant that has since run out. A Rockville parent has taken up the cause and offers them for $9.95. Call 240-832-1169 or email NewDriverMagnets@gmail.com

 

... From the Examiner.com:

"New Driver" Magnets Can Save Teen Lives

Have you seen the New Driver magnets? These car magnets with bright yellow with bold black lettering could help protect your child’s life.  They read:  "NEW DRIVER, Please Be Patient" and they are the brainchild of Jackie Kurtz, a Montgomery County parent. Kurtz, a mother of teens, decided to take matters into her own hands when the MVA lost funding for the Rookie Driver magnets.  Unable to find them anywhere else, she designed new magnets and started selling them to parents by word of mouth.  “I started this because I wanted to do all that I could to help my sons become good, responsible drivers.  Initially, I was looking to have one magnet made but it was too expensive so I ended up ordering a few hundred.  I knew there were a lot of parents out there who felt the same way, and would be happy to buy them.” says Kurtz.

Twice mentioned by Dr. Gridlock in the Washington Post, Kurtz was inundated with letters from parents thanking her for “this valuable safety service” and for “doing a great service for our community”.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, teenagers are involved in three times as many accidents as all other drivers.  Inexperience on the road is a major factor that causes new drivers to be considered a high risk group. 

“New drivers feel enough pressure without having people beeping at them and riding on their bumpers.  The value of these magnets is in alerting the public that a new driver is in their midst so they give that person sufficient space to drive responsibly.” 

And it’s not just for teenagers.  Kurtz has had orders from adults of all ages, who are just learning to drive, parents who are planning ahead, afraid they won’t be able to find them later, buying them for their children who are 2-12 years away from getting their license, and even an experienced adult who just bought an RV and wanted a New Driver magnet to put on the back. 

For further details, contact:  Jackie Kurtz, owner, New Driver Magnets at 240-832-1169or email NewDriverMagnets@gmail.com