National Teen Driver Safety Week Encourages Responsible Habits

More than 5,000 teens are killed in car accidents every year, making fatal auto-related crashes the number one cause of teen deaths, according to organizers of National Teen Driver Safety Week. Drivers 16 to 19 years old are four times more likely to be involved in fatalities than their counterparts in the 25 to 69 age group. During National Teen Driver Safety Week, held Oct. 20 though 26, 2013, encourages awareness and provides a forum for teens to help lower these startling statistics. Here are several ways to improve teen driving habits and lessen the chances of being in an automobile accident.

House Rules
Parents can help their young drivers to be safer by spending more time teaching them the importance of careful driving. Implementing house rules can do just that. Some ideas include restricting when and where they take the car, as well as who is riding along with them while they’re on the road. In order for house rules to work, young drivers need to follow their parents’ guidelines and avoid distracted driving.

Defensive Driving Techniques
A Texas defensive driving course can teach them the techniques and concepts that provide a solid foundation for better skills and habits that they can use now and in their future years behind the wheel.

Speed Management
Obeying the speed limit and slowing down further during inclement weather gives drivers a better chance of reacting favorably to road hazards.

Avoiding Distractions
Keeping the phone turned off and the music turned down to a low level minimizes distractions. Limiting the number of passengers is another safety option. Some states have graduated driver licensing for teen drivers which limits the possibility of distractions by restricting certain passengers, mobile device use, and acceptable drive times. Statistics from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute found that three-quarters of serious teen driving crashes were caused by a critical error on the driver’s part. Just under half of the crashes were caused by going too fast for the present road conditions while exceeding the speed limit, not detecting hazards early enough for an appropriate reaction and when drivers were distracted by something outside or inside their vehicles. By increasing their focus on driving safely, teens can make the roads a less dangerous place to be not only during National Teen Driver Safety Week, but every day of the year.

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