Most teenagers are ecstatic when they pass their driving test, and they definitely are not thinking about the risk they pose to other drivers. In reality, teens are the riskiest age group when it comes to car accidents.
Crashes occur due to a variety of reasons. However, there is evidence that parental involvement can help reduce the risk of accidents.
Risk factors involved in collisions
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, car accidents injure hundreds of and kill an average of seven, teenage drivers every day. The lack of experience is one of the major factors, and crash risk is highest during the first month of a teen’s driving life. Other factors include:
- Weekend and nighttime driving
- Alcohol use
- The presence of other teens in the vehicle
Research shows that teens also have low seatbelt usage, which increases the probability of more serious and fatal injuries.
How parents can improve their teenagers’ driving abilities
States do their best to counteract the high accident risk by having graduated driver licensing programs. These limit driving rights until the teenager gains more experience. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, parents can help by understanding and enforcing the state’s GDL laws.
Parents also play a big role when it comes to their teen’s driving skills. Parents should spend hours with their teen in the car, guiding his or her driving in different and challenging situations. Parents also play a role early on because children use them as role models. Parents should set good examples by leaving the phone off while driving, avoiding distracting behaviors and following all traffic laws.
Although teenagers pose a greater risk to drivers on the road, it is possible to reduce the risks by getting parents involved and allowing teens to get a lot of practice behind the wheel.