PKSD Newsletter: How Parents Can Help Keep Their Teen Drivers Safer on the Roads
Teen drivers are among the riskiest of all drivers on the road. Their lack of experience behind the wheel combined with judgment skills that are not yet fully developed increases the odds of them being involved in a car crash. So how can parents help to keep them safer on the roads?
This month’s PKSD Newsletter focuses on teen drivers, the most common risks they face, and the role parents play in helping them to stay safe while they become better drivers.
Risks Commonly Associated with Teen Drivers
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately six teens across the U.S. die every day in a car crash. Teens between the ages of 16 and 19 are about three times more likely to have a fatal crash than drivers aged 20 years and up. Young male drivers are even more likely to be involved in a serious collision than young female drivers.
All teen drivers have a greater risk for being involved in a collision because they:
- Are more likely to engage in risky driving behavior
- Have too little experience driving
- Are more easily distracted – especially by cellphones and other passengers
- May be less likely to wear their seatbelts
- Might drive at times they should not – such as when they are drowsy
- May be more inclined to engage in reckless behavior – such as driving at high speeds or trying to beat a red light
- Are often more easily tempted to follow another teen’s bad advice – such as drinking and driving
- Do not fully grasp the responsibility or the duty of care they owe themselves and others while behind the wheel
How Parents Can Impact Teen Driver Safety
It is only natural to be concerned when sending out young teen drivers on the road, especially for their first year behind the wheel. First-time teen drivers are twice as likely to get in a car crash as those who are one to two years older. Experience makes a significant difference in a teen’s driving skills and their ability to manage potential and common hazards that may arise, such as:
- Dealing with unplanned, or even known bad weather situations
- Looking out for unexpected road hazards, like objects in the road or large potholes
- Being mindful of work zones and understanding both the risks and potential legal trouble if they do not follow traffic laws when driving through one
- Driving at night, especially in unfamiliar places
- Knowing what to do to avoid having a vehicle break down (such as car maintenance) and how to handle if something goes wrong (like a flat tire)
- How to deal with pressure from peers when it comes to speeding, drinking and driving or ignoring other traffic safety laws
- Teaching them when to recognize other times they should not drive, such as when they are tired or too low on gas
All of these are road pressures your young teen will need to face and be aware of before getting behind the wheel.
How Parents Can Help Their Teens Become Better, Safer Drivers
The good news is that parents can make a significant difference in keeping their teens safer behind the wheel. Preparing them by helping them to think through potential difficulties and how to deal with them – before they get on the road – can help them be better equipped to deal with challenges as a driver.
In addition to discussing and walking your teen through the handling of these types of situations, some other ways to help keep your teen safe include:
- Ensuring they get a lot of hours of practice with you before going solo – the more driving practice they get with you, the more confidence and skills they build as a driver.
- Leading by example – wear your seat belt, slow down for yellow lights, stay off your cellphone, etc. Your teen will model what they see.
When You Need Legal Help, PKSD Law is Ready to Help
Despite your best efforts to help your teen become a confident and safe driver, accidents may still happen. If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a car crash caused by a negligent driver, we are prepared to help. We take car crash cases on contingency, and your initial consultation is completely free, so there is no risk in calling to talk to us – even if you are not sure if you have a case.
Our trusted car accident lawyers in Milwaukee are committed to helping the injured recover maximum compensation. In our decades of experience, we have recovered millions in compensation for our clients. Call our law offices 24/7 to schedule your free case review today. We are here to help.
Experienced Lawyers. No Upfront Costs. 877-877-2228