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Teen Drivers And Vehicle Safety

Tips for handling a teen driver

Anytime a loved one is involved in a car accident it can be a scary time, especially when it involves your teen daughter or son. It’s important to remember to talk to your children before allowing them to get behind the wheel and prepare them in case of an emergency. The risk of motor vehicle crashes is higher among 16- to 19-year-olds than among any other age group on the roads. In fact, per mile driven, teen drivers ages 16 to 19 are three times more likely than drivers aged 20 and older to be in a fatal crash according to the CDC. Some things to keep in mind for yourself and for your teen driver before hitting the road:

Teen drivers are more likely to underestimate dangerous situations

Talk to your teen about not playing loud distracting music in the car and limiting the number of other teen passengers that you allow in the car. Texting and driving is an increasing problem across the country for people of all ages. Teens are the most at risk of accident when texting and driving because they are the least experienced drivers. Young drivers should not use a cell phone, or text and drive at any time. If your teen uses a cell phone ask them to wait until they are parked or have a passenger answer a phone call or text.

Lead by example, Don’t speed

Teens are more likely to speed and allow for less distance between other vehicles than older drivers. Among male drivers between the ages of 15 and 20 who were involved in fatal crashes, 39% were speeding at the time the accident occurred. Although it is hard to keep track of your teen’s driving speed when you are not in the car, as a parent leading by example and going the speed limit may have an impact on their driving habits.

Always wear a seat belt, Always

Teens have the lowest rate of seat belt use out of all other age groups. Only about 54% of high school students reported that they wear seat belts when another person is in the vehicle. Although newer cars now use flashing lights or sound to signal when a seat belt is not being used, a larger number of teens are still refusing to utilize this life-saving device while driving. Wearing a seat belt can protect a driver or passenger from concussion, broken bones and even fatal injuries.

It is important to talk to your teen before allowing them to get behind the wheel especially when they begin driving friends to school, and other places. As a driver, they take on more responsibility and need to be prepared and understand the rules of the road.

If you or someone you care about has been injured in a car accident, contact a Chicago personal injury lawyer at The Horwitz Law Group by calling 312-641-9200.

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