Let's Talk About Teen Driver Safety
According to the CDC, six teens ages 16 to 19 die every day from motor vehicle injuries.
Per mile driven, teen drivers ages 16 to 19 are nearly three times more likely than drivers aged 20 and older to be in a fatal crash. As a parent of teenagers, those are very scary numbers!
When people call in about adding their teenager to their policy, we tell them part of the reason it is so expensive to add a teen driver is because of the risk associated with new drivers. It isn't a matter of if they get into an accident. It's a matter of when.
Inexperienced drivers struggle with judging the space needed to change lanes in traffic, driving safely in poor weather conditions and making turns safely. Your child may be a very conscientious driver, but it isn't just their driving you have to worry about. More experienced drivers know how to drive more defensively. They know to look at how others are driving to avoid accidents. New drivers assume everyone else will drive the same way they will. Now of course I am talking about conscientious drivers. We all know those kids (and some adults!) who think they (1) own the road and (2) are immortal. There was a kid who drove a white jeep in our neighborhood. When you saw that jeep coming you were automatically on guard! You do not want any of your children to be that kid!
The National Safety Council says that at least half of all teens will be involved in a car crash before they graduate from High School. Half! They strongly suggest parents drive with teens even after they get their license. Teens who drive with their parents in the car decrease the probability of causing a crash. So I know for many parents it seems a very stressful and harrowing experience to be a passenger in their parent care, so think of it as a way to pass your experience and knowledge onto your young drivers.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sponsors Teen Driver Safety week each year in October. This week actually!
So there are some tips for some rules before letting your teen take off in the car.
NHTSA reminds parents to set the rules before the teens hit the road with "5 to Drive":
· No cell phones while driving
· No extra passengers
· No speeding
· No alcohol
· No driving or riding without a seat belt
Parents must be involved in teaching their young drivers! Safety!Safety!Safety!
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