The summer months are finally upon us. This is the time of the year that many of us engage in outdoor activities and take to the roadways. This results in many more driving accidents for our teen drivers. In fact, a recent AAA study reported that the number of teen driving accidents dramatically increased by 15% during the summer months. Tragically, this report continues by stating that 16 and 17-year-old drivers are three times more likely to be involved in a fatal automobile accident than are adult drivers. So reducing teen driving accidents should be of paramount concern to all parents, especially during the summer months. So here are five ways to reduce Connecticut teenage driver accidents:
1) Constantly Monitor and Review the Dangers of Drinking and Driving
The NHTSA reported that approximately 1/3 of all teenage drivers that were killed in motor vehicle accidents had consumed alcohol. It is very important that you constantly monitor and review the dangers of drinking and driving with your teenagers. The summer months present plenty of opportunities for teenagers to throw or attend parties or go to events where alcohol is present. You should impose strict penalties on your teenage driver if they ever have found to be drinking and driving or riding as a passenger with another teenager who has been drinking.
2) Stress the Dangers of Speeding
More than half of all fatal teenage driving accidents involve speeding. Teenagers may become distracted, or lack experience in engaging evasive maneuvers to avoid hazards that may suddenly appear, may have trouble judging speed or distance when behind the wheel or lack maturity or judgment and these problems are greatly compounded when speeding. Make sure you discuss the importance of driving within the posted speed limit, and institute penalties if your teen is found to be violating any of your rules.
3) Monitor Your Teen's Sleep Schedule and Limit Night Driving
If you pay attention to your teen's sleep schedule, and do not allow them to drive your vehicle at any point in time when they are experiencing sleep deprivation, then you can greatly reduce the risk of them having an accident. In addition to being tired, a poor sleep schedule could result in a lack of attention and impaired judgment for your teenage driver. According to one source, the incidence of fatal motor vehicle accidents of 16-year-olds more than doubles between the ages of 9 PM and midnight. By instituting a limit on night driving, you will greatly reduce the risk of your child being involved in an accident.
4) Talk About and Limit Distracted Driving
Distracted driving accounts for almost 60% of all motor vehicle accidents involving teenage drivers. Distracted driving takes many different forms and could include: cell phone usage; texting and driving; having an excessive number of passengers in a motor vehicle; adjusting the radio; having animals in the car while driving; eating or drinking while driving; or other activities that take the driver's attention away from the important task of operating a motor vehicle. You should also seriously consider forbidding your teenager from using a cell phone while driving.
5) Always Wear a Seat Belt
Wearing a seat belt can reduce the risk of being injured in a motor vehicle accident by 50%. Make sure you talk to your teen driver about the requirement of wearing a seat belt both while a driver and as a passenger. You should also insist that every other individual in your motor vehicle wear a seat belt. This is one of the easiest ways of preventing teen driver injuries while in a motor vehicle.
Although it is very important for parents to constantly monitor and discuss these driving hazards in an effort to prevent motor vehicle accidents, perhaps the best way a parent can avoid their teen being involved in an accident is by being a good role model. Make sure you stop at stop signs. Do not speed. Never drink and drive. Always wear your seat belt. Don't involve in distracted driving techniques or use your cell phone while operating a motor vehicle. Make sure you follow all of the rules of the road and act as a good role model that your teenage driver can emulate.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident with a teen driver, seeking legal advice from a Connecticut personal injury attorney is one of the best ways to make sure your rights are fully protected. There are many things that you should be doing, and there other things that you should never do after you have been involved in an accident. If you don't know these things, then you could severely harm your case or even potentially destroy it. Our Connecticut car accident attorneys are happy to provide you with FREE information and legal advice. If you have been injured, schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced Connecticut accident lawyers today.