The summer season is winding down and school is back in session for many high school and college students. As students are hitting the road to commute to and from school, now is a good time to remind your student driver about safe driving practices.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2014, there were 1,717 young drivers 15 to 20 years old who died in motor vehicle crashes and an estimated 170,000 young drivers were injured in motor vehicle crashes in 2014. Don’t let your student driver become part of this statistic – encourage them to stay focused while on the road and follow these safety tips:
Don’t talk on the phone or text while driving.
Not only is texting or using a hand-held phone while driving illegal in many states, it’s also a dangerous distraction. Ten percent of all drivers 15 to 19 years old involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted at the time of the accident.
Always wear a seat belt and make all your passengers wear one, too.
During a crash, being buckled up helps keep you safe and secure inside your vehicle, whereas being completely thrown out of a vehicle is almost always deadly. Seat belts are the best defense against impaired, aggressive, and distracted drivers.
Abide by the speed limit.
Going too fast gives you less time to stop or react. Excessive speed is one of the top causes of teenage car accidents.
Don’t drink and drive or ride with someone who has consumed alcohol.
If you need a ride call a friend, family member, or taxi. Car crashes are the No. 1 cause of death for teens and one of three of these crashes is alcohol related.
Keep the music down.
Driving with the volume on the stereo turned up may seem harmless, but it can be just as much of a distraction as using a cell phone.
Don’t try to squeeze too many people into a car.
You should never have more people in a car than you do seat belts.
Abide by all traffic lights and signs.
Don’t run red lights or stop signs, and make sure the intersection is clear even if the light is green.
Keeping your student driver safe on the road is important and part of that means making sure he/she has the appropriate auto insurance coverage. Your Farm Bureau agent can help you find the right coverage for your student driver and answer any questions you have about the insurance.