With this past week being National Teen Driver Safety Week, it is important to take a moment to recognize the importance of improving driver safety. Taking October 14-20 to focus on this was purposeful in raising awareness about the serious risks and dangers teen drivers face on the road.
There are countless teen drivers in the U.S. According to statistics, drivers between the age 16 and 19 are at the highest risk for being involved in an accident. Factors that impact this include texting while driving, lack of experience, risky driving behavior, various distractions, and an inability to recognize a dangerous situation.
Support from NHTSA & U.S. Department of Transportation
Together with State Farm Insurance, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and other partners, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Department of Transportation asked the nation to focus on improving teen driver safety this past week. But awareness shouldn’t drop after a week. Parents, teachers, and friends alike can help improve road safety by reminding teen drivers to remain focused.
With common distractions like texting, browsing the internet, and social media apps pulling teen drivers’ attention off the road, it has led to an increase in accidents over the years. Research points out that drivers under the age of 25 are as much as 3 times more likely to send emails or texts while driving than older drivers. Additionally, 11% of all drivers below the age of 20 involved in fatal crashes in 2011 were reportedly distracted.
NHTSA’s Drive by the Rules. Keep the Privilege Campaign
In an effort to help curb these accidents, the NHTSA launched their Drive by the Rules. Keep the Privilege campaign to remind young drivers of important highway safety laws that are often overlooked. It also encourages safe driving practices and provides parents with practical ways / resources to keep their teens safe.
A recent survey shows that only around 25% of parents sit down with their children and seriously talk about the importance of driver safety. With 2,614 teen drivers killed in fatal crashes in 2013 and around 240,000 more injured, it is more important than ever for parents to take the time to have this talk with their teens.
Teen Driving Resources
Whether you are the parent of a teen or are a young driver, promoting road safety can help save lives. If you would like to play your part in making the road safer, you can start by taking the distracted driving pledge.
You can also find more helpful resources from the NHTSA below:
Help your teen driver—and yourself—eliminate distractions when on the road. Have a talk about driver safety.