There are so many safety factors to consider when your teenager begins driving. When it comes to teen brain development, distracted driving, and graduated license laws, parents have a strong role in assuring that their children stay safe behind the wheel. Great safety strategies include educating your teen about the dangers of distracted driving, and creating a teen-parent safe driving contract that rewards safe driving behavior. But there’s one aspect for new teen drivers that parents have complete control over: what car (if any) they will drive.
Although the brain is 80 percent developed at adolescence, new research indicates that brain signals essential for motor skills and emotional maturity are the last to extend to the brain’s frontal lobe, which is responsible for many of the skills essential for driving. This research suggests that emotional immaturity, not inexperience, is the primary reason that teenage drivers are responsible for far more car accidents than any other age demographic. Click through for our animated brain development infographic.
Teenagers are notoriously the most dangerous demographic of drivers. But there are dozens of factors that can influence car accidents that have nothing to do with inexperience and immaturity. In fact, older drivers can become a hazard as their eyesight, motor skills, and spatial recognition begins to fade, and a set of safety advocates are beginning to suggest laws to ensure that drivers stay safe on the road as they grow older. This guide lists some of the dangers associated with driving for older adults, and some possible alternatives to help drivers maintain their freedom once they put away the keys.
The details of your state’s driving laws might not be a major influence on the events of your daily life, but if you or your teenager is getting a license, you want to make calls or text while behind the wheel, or your elderly parents are losing their motor skills, knowledge of the relevant regulations becomes essential. Looking at driver laws nationwide, the trend is moving toward stricter graduated license laws for teen drivers, and heightened regulations against distracted driving. Scroll over this interactive map to see the details of your state’s driving laws and how they compare to others.
Slowly but surely, technology has become an unavoidable part of our day. But fidgeting with cell phones and other technological devices while driving is enormously dangerous, contributing to more than 500,000 injuries and 6,000 deaths last year alone, according to the .National Highway Traffic Administration. With that in mind, we have compiled a list of devices that will help avoid the temptation to text, email, or dial friends while on the road. These devices can help make yourself and your teenager tech gurus, but more importantly, a safer drivers.
Getting into a car accident is scary, confusing, and complicated. It's even scarier to think about your teenager getting into a car accident. But it's important that if you or your teenager is in that situation, everyone knows what to do. So while we hope you never have to use this form, we encourage you to download our Car Accident Preparedness PDF, and keep it in your glovebox, along with your insurance and vehicle registration info. Key pieces of the PDF include emergency supplies, the parties involved, witnesses, documenting the scene, and a step-by-step checklist.