January is Teen Driving Awareness Month in the United States, and it is a good time to remember that car accidents remain the leading cause of death among teens. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 1,885 teen drivers died in motor vehicle accidents in 2020, which is 17 percent more than the 1,616 teens who died in car accidents in 2019.
If you have a teen driver in your household, the following safety tips could help prevent an accident.
Make Sure Your Teen Wears a Seat Belt
Wearing a seat belt makes a big difference in accident survivability. A driver is 10 times less likely to die in an accident when wearing a seat belt. Emphasizing the need to wear a seat belt for safety is critical. You should also set a good example by always wearing your seat belt as well.
Teach Your Teen About Safety Features
Many automakers offer onboard teen driver apps that help prevent aggressive driving. They may also be able to limit potential speeding by putting a governor on the vehicle. They can even limit the audio volume to help your teen focus on driving safely.
When the car is back home, parents can download the program information and get a detailed report on how safely their teen is driving. Such programs enable parents to closely monitor their teens’ driving behaviors.
Discourage Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is the leading cause of accidents involving teen drivers. You should do your best to teach your teen to leave the cell phone alone while driving and to minimize potential distractions.
When traveling at highway speeds, a vehicle can cover the distance of a football field in just five seconds. That is a long distance to cover without looking at the road.
The cell phone, changing the radio, and interacting with passengers are common distractions for teen drivers. Teaching your teen to leave the cell phone alone and focus on driving instead of other things greatly improves the chances of avoiding accidents.
Teen drivers who have other teens in their vehicles are more likely to speed and become distracted while driving. You should know who is driving with your teen and limit the total number of passengers that you would allow. The fewer people and distractions, the easier it will be to focus on driving safely.
Emphasize Sober Driving
It is illegal for teens to drink alcohol. Yet, alcohol is a significant factor in many teen driving accidents and fatalities.
You should try your best to make sure your teen driver understands the dangers of driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Your teen should understand the potential legal consequences as well.
Get Legal Help From a Media Car Accident Lawyer at Eckell Sparks
If you were injured in an accident, you can meet with a Media car accident lawyer at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. Call us at 610-565-3701 or complete our online form to schedule a consultation. Located in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we serve clients in Montgomery County, Chester County, and Delaware County.