National Teen Driver Safety Week takes place October 20 to 26, 2019. Now in its 12th year, National Teen Driver Safety Week is dedicated to raising awareness and seeking solutions to prevent teen injuries and deaths on the road.

If you’ve ever driven, you’ve probably asked yourself the question: where do people learn to drive like that? Well, it’s no mystery that people are most often taught by their parents or family members to drive when they are teens in preparation for their driver’s test. It is easy to look at all the accidents and fatalities caused by teen drivers and blame everything on the drivers themselves. Perhaps it will be more productive to look at the ways everyone can help prevent accidents involving teenage drivers.

Teens have the highest rate of accidents of any age group, the cause of which is a lack of experience on the road. However, there are many factors that contribute to the high rates of teen-driver accidents, many of which can be prevented. With comprehensive drivers education, enforcing the Massachusetts driving permit rules, and open conversations about the responsibilities when driving, everyone can contribute to safer roads for teens and all drivers.

Teens who are starting to drive should realize the responsibilities of getting behind the wheel. Taking driver education classes seriously and following the rules of their driving permit and Junior Operator’s License. This means not driving friends around during their junior operator period, implementing lessons learned in drivers education, and avoiding distracted driving.

According to studies done by the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, “teens who say their parents set rules and pay attention to their activities in a helpful, supportive way are half as likely to crash.” To encourage teens to be aware and responsible when driving is one of the most preventative ways to reduce accidents.

For parents, it is essential to teach teens to drive safely. This comes into play not only when teens are driving, but when parents are driving. Teens will emulate how they see their parents driving, so parents must set a good example by following rules and being precautious. Massachusetts’ rules and guidelines for teenagers require that at the age of 16 teens pass the drivers permit test. Over the following six months, students have to drive for 40 hours with supervision from a driver over 21 years old. Parents must make sure that not only are these 40 hours are completed, but that they are used to practice a variety of skills.

Most teens complete the learner’s permit period without sufficient skills to drive on their own or with the added distractions of passengers. Skills to focus on should include left turns, keeping a distance behind other cars, city and highway driving, roundabouts, as well as adapting to new landscapes. Research has shown that the three most prominent errors made by young drivers are lack of scanning for hazards, fast driving, and distracted driving.

If you’re not a teen driver or a parent of one, you may be wondering how you can help prevent accidents with teen drivers. The truth is, young drivers will learn to drive how they see others doing it. Distracted driving, road rage, and speeding are visible practices that teen drivers can pick up on. Being patient with drivers education students will help them acquire the necessary skills to be aware and patient drivers. Experience is the most important aspect of the road—but if you don’t give teens time to learn how to drive safely, they never will. 

The Law Offices of Dussault & Zatir

*The above is not to be considered as legal advice. Every case is different and the laws which apply may differ from state to state.

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If you or a family member have been left with injuries after a car accident caused by the negligence of a distracted driver, please contact us to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer. Dussault & Zatir P.C. has attorneys on call at +1-800-542-4LAW to answer your personal injury questions. We have a great deal of experience handling such cases and have achieved big, successful and fast results. We know what you are going through and what you need. With offices in New Bedford, Fall River and Taunton, Massachusetts, as well as an office in Providence, Rhode Island, if you’ve been injured, our lawyers are here to fight for you. Call: 508-999-2000.