Did You Know?:
In 2011, the number of teenage deaths on the highway has climbed for the first time in 8 years. Car crashes remain the leading cause of death for teenagers. From 2010-2011, the number of teen drivers killed increased 13.7%.
- 59% of teenage passenger deaths occurred in vehicles driven by another teen.
- 17% of teenage deaths occurred between 9pm and midnight and 25% between midnight and 6am.
- 55% occurred from Friday-Sunday.
Texting while driving
- Makes you 23 times more likely to be in an accident.
- Is the same as driving blind for 5 seconds.
- Slows your brake reaction speed by 18%.
Most Common Contributing Factors:
- Poor choices (use of drugs/ alcohol, use of seat belts)
- Distractions (cell phones, number of passengers)
Tips for Parents
RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PARENTS OF TEEN DRIVERS
It is recommended that we as parents remain involved in our teen’s daily lives, especially while driving. It is a natural progression for a teenager to feel a new sense of “freedom” once they receive their driver’s license and especially if they have own vehicle. And, it is easy for us as parents to go along with that. They want us to “trust them” because they are a good driver, they have good grades and good behavior.
Unfortunately, we all know, BAD THINGS HAPPEN TO GOOD PEOPLE.
What is important to remember is they do not have the years of driving experience that is necessary to be “good” drivers. Experience is what makes us better drivers. As adults, as an experienced driver, we know that our experience is what we draw from to make that “split second” decision every time we have to swerve out someone’s way and do so without causing another incident. Our experience is what we draw from to keep from hitting the car in front of us who is slamming on their brakes, or not take a curve too fast, or handle rainy conditions, or heavy traffic. Our experience guides us anytime we have to assess a situation and make a judgment in seconds. Our new teen drivers don’t have that yet.
- Most accidents occur within the first two years of driving.
- Many teenagers have an automobile accident during their first two years of driving.
The intent is not to create fear in our teens, but constant awareness and good judgment. We have seen the headlines again and again. Following is a statement from a junior high school student after losing her friend at the wheel of a car. “I stopped driving fast and I’m just really cautious now about what I do.” We don’t want to wait until after something happens.
Please review the following suggestions and consider them for you and your teen. They can be a mechanism to help us keep involved. As your teen becomes more experienced, these can be adjusted:
Have a written contract between your teen driver and you to include, for example:
- A promise for No drinking and driving
- Limit the number of passengers allowed, especially early on
- Do not allow cell phone use
- Don’t let them driver late at night, if they want to be out late, give them a ride home
- Mandatory use of seat belts
- Enroll them in a collision avoidance course
- Restrict use of the vehicle. Don’t allow cart blanche use of your vehicle.
- Insist they tell you where they are going, what time they will return and whom they will have with them.
- Reconsider their requests to “beef up the car stereo”.
- Be careful about tinting windows to dark, it can obscure vision at night.
- Reconsider allowing them to have their own vehicle too soon
Special Thanks to the following supporters who have been critical to the success of our programs:
- Allstate Foundation
- Space Coast Credit Union
- Brevard Community College
- Brevard County State Farm
- Brevard Public Schools
- and our Community Partners