How Parents Can Reduce Connecticut Teen Driving Accidents
Our teenagers experience a lot of growing pains and are very susceptible to the influences of others. It is very important, as parents of these teens, that we act as role models especially as it relates to teen driving safety. A recent survey indicated that 96% of teens have a conversation with their parents about safe driving while only 84% of teens have conversations with their parents about alcohol and drug use, 78% have a conversation with their parents about safe sex and 67% of teens discuss bullying issues with their parents. Obviously the vast majority of teens are receptive to having a conversation with their parents about safe driving issues so it is important that parents take advantage of this welcome the opportunity to have these much needed talks.
It is very important that parents and teens agree on the dangers of driving and that the consequences involved with not following the rules of the road which should be stressed to and understood by the teen driver. In addition to having conversations with their teens about safe driving behavior, another critical piece of this puzzle is the fact that parents need to be good driving role models for their teen drivers. Sadly, teens have reported that parents who were not good driving role models are more than twice as likely to be involved in an accident as our teens whose parents are good driving role models.
Consider the following: almost 25% of teens who reported that their parents are not good driving role models have been involved in at least one accident as a driver, compared to only 10% of teens who reported that their parents are good role models as drivers; and 15% of teens who reported that their parents are not good role models in their driving have been issued at least one ticket, for a moving violation, compared to approximately 1/3 of that number of teens who reported that their parents are good role models as drivers.
One survey found some astonishing results as it related to how parents and teens view certain teen driving related risks which would include the following: almost 2/3 of teens who were surveyed were concerned about drunk driving compared to only 14% of parents; more than 55% of teens are concerned about distracted teen driving as it relates to cell phones versus only 35% of parents; more than half of the teens were concerned about drowsy driving compared to only 31% of parents. It should be noted that younger teens are more receptive to having safe driving conversations with their parents then are older teens.
As parents, we have an opportunity to make a real difference in how our children safely operate a motor vehicle. It is not enough to just have a conversation with our team about the importance of following the rules of the road, the great risks that come with violating these rules and the unimaginable tragic consequences which could flow from these violations. We must also be great role models for our children. Do we stop at stop signs and follow the rules the road? Do we engage in distracted teen driving including using our handheld cell phone? Do we drink at dinner or attend parties where alcohol is served to us and then operate a motor vehicle when perhaps it is not prudent to do so? Are there other things that we are doing while operating a motor vehicle that could be improved upon so that we can become better role models for our children?
This is too important of a consideration to not take the time and effort that it deserves. The last thing we want to experience as a parent is finding out that her child has been injured in a car accident or worse! One of the things that you can do to start this conversation is to visit our website at www.hcwlaw.com and download a free copy of our parent teen driving agreement. This downloadable document will allow you to have an extended conversation with your team about what is acceptable and what is not acceptable behavior in how they operate your motor vehicle and the consequences that they will experience as a result of not following these rules. It also provides you with a number of safety tips that could help your child get out of a potentially dangerous situation without experiencing adverse consequences from you. Please take care of this very important issue right away by reviewing this agreement with your teen, by constantly monitoring your teens driving and by acting as a great role model so your child becomes a better driver.