According to the AAA National Foundation for Traffic Safety, when teen drivers ride with teen passengers, everyone in the car has a 51% higher fatality risk than for a comparable trip with an adult driver. In fact, motorists ages 16 to 19 have a higher accident rate than any other age group.
Help keep your teen and others safe on the road by enforcing these critical rules for your new driver.
Know the graduated license laws
During the first 12 months of licensure, a teen driver may not transport passengers under 20 years old unless accompanied by a licensed driver who is at least 25 years old in the vehicle. Teen drivers also must remain off the road between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. unless traveling to work or a school function for the first year they have their license. Making your teen follows these rules removes two of the biggest risk factors for serious accidents involving young drivers.
Stress seatbelt use
Most fatalities in accidents involving new drivers involve failure to wear a seatbelt. Unfortunately, this age group also tends to hit the road without buckling up appropriately. Remind your teen about the importance of wearing a seat belt for every ride, no matter how short.
Dismiss distracted driving
Teen drivers are also more prone to accidents involving device use and other types of distractions. Set a good example by stowing your own smartphone when you drive and make sure your child understands the dangers of texting and driving. Eating, talking to passengers and adjusting the stereo can also contribute to crashes.
Making these safety measures part of your household rules for new drivers can reduce the chances of their involvement in a catastrophic auto accident.