When it comes to the mindset of teenage drivers, it can be hard to tell if they fully understand the dangers involved with driving. A new study by Driver-Tests.org answers some of the questions surrounding teenagers and the dangers of driving.
The road in itself is dangerous and can be costly for even the most minor of mistakes, but nothing rivals the danger that can be associated with teenage drivers. With motor vehicle fatalities being the leading cause of teenage deaths in this day in age, we all fear for their safety and our own.
Did you know that 75% of all teen crashes are due to driver error? Sadly it’s true, not paying attention, overcompensating turns, and just plain driving mistakes cause horrible accidents.
It’s known that summer is especially deadly for teen drivers, with eight teens dying in traffic accidents every day between Memorial day and Labor day. According to a new nationwide study released by Driving-Tests.org, a leading online driver education provider reveals that teenage drivers are aware of the dangers involved with driving a motor vehicle.
However, they are surprisingly insecure about their own limited ability to manage those risks. The whole point of this study was to reach into the mind of teenage drivers in an effort to better understand their perspective on driving safely.
Keeping in mind the recent increase in teen driving deaths, what are the primary safety concerns of teenage drivers?
- Unfortunately, traffic fatalities among 16-17 year old drivers jumped by 19% during the first six months of 2012 which was compiled by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA)
- 85% of teens identified texting, talking on a cell phone and driving under the influence as the three most dangerous things a person can do while driving.
- 50% of all teens surveyed indicated that fear of being in an accident and of other drivers is their primary safety concern.
Why are fewer teens getting driver’s licenses?
A recent study by University of Michigan indicates that fewer teenagers are getting their licenses. Only 28 percent of 16 year-olds had their driver’s license in 2010, which is an 18% decline from 1983.
- 0% of teens surveyed cited cost or expense as a deterrent to driving.
- 15% of teens indicated that emotional pressure made them fearful about driving.
- 28% of teens indicated that they were struggling to grasp advanced driving skills such as operating a vehicle on a highway and being close to trucks, turning, and parallel parking.
With so much emphasis on texting, do teenage drivers still consider drinking and driving to be a safety hazard?
- Interestingly enough, there has been a recent increase in campaigns designed to raise awareness on the dangers of distracted driving and in particular texting and driving.
- At the same time, according to NHTSA, nearly one-third of driver’s ages 15 to 20 who were killed in crashes had been drinking.
- About 79% of teens believe “texting” or “using a cell phone” is the most dangerous habits a person can have while driving.
- Strangely, only 9% of teens believe drinking and driving are the exact risk despite the evidence that over 22% of all teenage fatalities involved alcohol.
Parental influence is credited with making a positive difference on teenage behavior; do they come across as good role models?
Although parents are to thank for being involved with their teens driving, there are some examples of poor parental faux pas:
- At least 56% of teens have observed parents texting or talking on their phones.
- 18% of teens cited interior distractions (Applying makeup, eating, and adjusting controls)
- 12% of teens witnessed “dangerous driving habits” such as not wearing a seatbelt and driving with their knees.
- Driving with their knees….really? Just wow.
Let’s take a look at the conclusion of this study:
- Parents should ALWAYS lead by example when teens are in the car by wearing a seatbelt, putting their cell phones away and focusing on the road.
- Talk to teenagers about responsible driving. Emphasize the risks of distracted driving along with the dangers of drinking and driving.
- Consider registering our teen for a defensive driving class or spending a little extra time to driving in traffic on the highway, at higher speeds and around trucks.
What are teenagers’ biggest fears about driving?
- 36%- Being involved in an accident, crash, or wreck.
- 22%- Unpredictability of an interaction with other drivers.
- 23%- Parallel parking, turning, highways, driving around trucks.
- 6%- Getting lost or feeling confused.
What is the hardest part about learning how to drive?
- 24%- Understanding the words and language on the driver’s test.
- 16%- Developing the right driving skills.
- 12%- Feeling nervous, overcoming the emotional pressure.
What is the most dangerous thing to do when driving?
- 63%- Texting
- 12%- Talking on a cell phone.
- 10%- Drinking and driving.
Fear and anxiety play a role in teenage drivers.
- 14%- “I am fearful about driving”
- 12%- “Emotional pressure makes it hard to drive.”
- 5%- “I am afraid of killing someone or injuring my passengers.”
What is the most dangerous thing you see your parents do while driving?
- 34%- Texting
- 21%- Failure to focus on the road due to interior distraction.
- 19%- Using a cell phone
- 13%- Safety violations such as not wearing a seatbelt or driving with knees.
- 8%- Aggressive driving.
What aspects of driving are teenagers most excited about?
- 27%-Freedom & independence
- 25%- Increased mobility & access to transportation
- 14%- I am not excited to drive, I am fearful
- 9%- Getting to work. Going to school and helping to transport family members.
If you want to try out some free permit practice test service then go to Driving-Tests.org!
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