Young Drivers Face Highest Risk of Distracted Driving Accident
Although distracted driving constitutes a serious safety issue regardless of the age of the motorists, inexperienced teen drivers who multi-task behind the wheel pose an especially serious risk to other motorists. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that distracted driving claims the lives of an average of eight people each day in the United States. During a recent one-year period, distracted driving claimed the lives of 2,800 people and resulted in injury to 400,000 more. While drivers of all ages engage in distracted driving, younger drivers tend to pose the greatest risk of causing a distracted driving accident.
The Youth Risk Behavior Surveillances System (TYRBSS), which tracks risky behavior patterns among high school students, reveals that 39 percent of students surveyed admitted driving while using their phone to text or email within a month of participating in the recent survey. The agency also reports that teen drivers (age 15-19) are even more likely to be distracted behind the wheel. Tragically, approximately 8 percent of teen drivers killed in a crash were distracted at the time of the collision.
Distracted teen drivers pose an even more serious threat because they often engage in other forms of unsafe driving conduct while multi-tasking behind the wheel. The riskiest practices that accompany distracted teen driving include the following:
- Lack of seatbelt use
- Alcohol-impaired driving
- Tendency to speed
- Climbing in the car with an alcohol-impaired motorist
Along with the tendency to engage in other unsafe driving practices, teen drivers also face a higher risk of being involved in distracted driving collisions because of their inexperience behind the wheel. Teen drivers face the disadvantages of inexperience, immaturity, and undeveloped driving skills.
The magnitude of the risk to young inexperienced drivers multi-tasking behind the wheel can hardly be overstated. According to one study dialing a number on a cellular phone increases a teen driver’s risk of being involved in a crash by 6 times while texting behind the wheel increases this threat by a staggering 23 times.
If you or someone close to you has been injured or you have lost a family member in an accident caused by a distracted driver, a knowledgeable distracted driving accident attorney can explain your legal rights and how to pursue a claim for damages.
Safety Tips When Teaching Your Teenager to Drive a Car
Teenage drivers are three times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident than adult drivers aged twenty years and older. You can help your teen understand the risks and avoid severe injuries by listening and taking the instruction seriously.
When teaching your teenager how to drive a motor vehicle, you may find your blood pressure rising during the process. However, the experience can be an enjoyable and memory-making experience for both you and your child. The following safety tips will help keep you and your teenager safe while they are driving.
The following are important safety tips to observe while teaching your teen to drive a vehicle.
Remain Calm and Avoid Raising Your Voice - Expect that your teen driver will make mistakes, and you should be prepared on how to handle a driving mistake. Driving instruction aims to build confidence and teach, so they don't make the same mistakes while on the road. The best approach is to instruct them by offering up recommendations.
Make Sure They Master the Basics - Make sure that your child has mastered the basics before progressing onto higher-level driving skills and lessons such as parallel parking. Make sure that your teenagers feel comfortable behind the wheel and driving. Start by teaching your teen driver about the location of the turning signals, gas pedal, brake pedal, parking brake, and dashboard controls. Next, show your child how to adjust the seat, mirrors and where they need to place their hands on the steering wheel. The safest place to begin driving lessons is a large, empty parking lot.
Minimize Driving Distractions - When your teen driver is learning how to drive a vehicle, it is very important that you remove driving distractions and teach your child to drive without distractions. For example, avoid bringing other people with you and your teen driver. It is essential to put away cellphones and keep the radio turned off. It is important that you remain alert and aware of your surroundings when teaching a child to drive. You have to be a second set of eyes for your child to avoid an accident.
Practice Driving in All Conditions - It is very important that you teach your teen driver to drive in low visibility and inclement weather. Instead of avoiding lessons during sunsets, light rain, or snow, permit your teenage to practice driving during these types of driving conditions. Once your teen driver has become comfortable driving close to your home, start integrating more difficult traffic and road conditions. It is important that your child practice driving on congested city streets, highways, interstates, and winding roads.
Practice, Practice, Practice - Allow your child to practice as much as they can. Mastering the skill of safe driving requires practice. The CDC advises that new drivers receive at least 30 to 50 hours of supervised driving experience over a period of six months.
Plan Your Routes - To help make the driving lessons safer, it is best to plan out a driving route in advance. This way, your teen driver knows where to go, and they are familiar with the turns, stop signs, and traffic devices along the route. Your child will feel much more calm and confident of their driving, knowing the route in advance.
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Source:https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812926 and https://www.familyeducation.com/teens/7-safety-tips-to-follow-when-teaching-your-teen-to-drive