Safest Cars & Driving Tips for Teens
It’s an exhilarating moment for teens when they’re first given the keys to drive alone. Not so much, however, for the parents waiting nervously at home for their safe return.
That’s because parents know the dangers lurking on streets and highways. Many are less than confident of their young driver’s capacity to make wise choices on the road. In a Louisiana survey, 64% of parents rank their teen’s driving performance as “fairly scary,” according to CarInsurance.com, a website for comparing auto insurance rates.
It’s not comforting to know that Louisiana is ranked the third deadliest state in the nation for teen drivers, based on an aggregate of these key metrics:
- Number of teen driver fatalities
- The breadth of Graduated Driving License laws
- Insurance costs for teen drivers
- Teen drinking and driving rates
- Teen emailing/texting and driving rates
- Seat belt use
If you, or your teenager, has been injured in an automobile accident, there’s no reason to put off talking to a car accident attorney. With time, evidence can be lost or even destroyed.
Call Tomeny | Best Injury Lawyers now. We can answer all your questions and map out a plan for your financial recovery. We’re ready 24/7 to get started with your free consultation.
What Makes a Vehicle More Safe and Reliable for an Inexperienced Driver?
If you’re in the market for a used vehicle for your teen, Consumer Reports and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have joined forces to provide just the research you need. They evaluate:
- Front, side, and roof-strength
- Head restraints
- Electronic stability control
- Curb weight
- Reliability scores
- Emergency handling scores
- Dry braking distances (going from 60 mph to 0 mph)
Recognizing that your budget for your teen’s car may be somewhat limited, Consumer Reports and IIHS provide the following list of “best” vehicles for safety and reliability.
A sample of the safest vehicle choices for teens include:
- 2014 or newer Mazda 3 sedan and hatchback
- 2019 or newer Kia Forte
- 2018 or newer Subaru Crosstrek
- 2013 or newer Honda Accord sedan and coupe
- 2016-18 Volkswagen Passat
- 2017-18 Volvo S60
- 2017 or newer BMW 3-series sedan
- 2016 and newer Buick Encore
- 2017 or newer Nissan Rogue
- 2016 or newer Audi Q3
- 2017-18 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport
- 2017-18 Lincoln MKX
- 2015-16 Honda Odyssey
What Types of Accidents Are Teens Most Likely to Get In?
Young drivers’ inexperience, combined with some destructive driving habits, make teens more likely to be involved in a crash. Car accidents are the leading cause of death for American teens, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Six teens aged 16 to 19 die every day from motor vehicle injuries.
Distracted driving is a leading culprit. According to a recent study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, distracted driving played a role in 58% of crashes involving a teen driver.
To make matters worse, teen drivers aren’t just distracted. AAA found that almost half of teens admitted to speeding on a residential street in the last month, while 40% admitted to doing so on the highway. Speed and distraction can be a deadly combination.
Safety Tips Your Teen Needs to Start Practicing Now
Parents have more influence than they think over their teen drivers, according to information from SafeKids.org, a global non-profit organization that advocates for the safety of kids.
SafeKids recommends that parents make these requirements part of a driving contract with their newly licensed teen:
- Buckle up, every person, front and back, every ride. If you never did it before, start now.
- Zero tolerance for drinking or impaired driving. There is no safe amount of alcohol a teen can drink before driving. It is against the law.
- Limit the number of passengers in your teen’s car. The number of passengers, especially if they are male, is directly related to the risk of a crash.
- Distractions such as texting, talking on the phone, and checking email are dangerous for any driver, but especially for inexperienced ones. Applying makeup, adjusting the radio, or conversing with passengers also can be dangerous.
- Speeding is a big problem for drivers, especially new drivers. Apply speed limits and be sure you observe them as well.
- Give your teen adequate time to practice driving at night and in all kinds of weather. Teen driver accidents are three times more likely at night.
- Encourage your teen to speak up in unsafe conditions. Give your teen multiple options for getting home safely without fear of getting in trouble.
At Tomeny | Best, we’re proud to stand up for car accident victims and their loved ones. Count on us to pursue all avenues to seek the compensation you deserve. Call us now. It’s your first – and best – step toward making things right.