When it comes to driving, there’s no replacement for experience and knowledge. And while a beginner driver lacks experience, their knowledge can keep them safe on the roads. Driving is dangerous when not practising it safely. This is the main reason defensive driving has an essential role in lowering the accident rate.
Driving is the main cause of thousands of injuries and billions in damage annually, but the number of fatalities is alarming. Young drivers are at high risk on the roads, even if they represent less than 15% of the total US population, they account for 30% of the total number of vehicle injuries. Over 2000 teens are killed and 240,000 injured in vehicle accidents only in the United States. It’s disturbing for parents to know that 6 teens die daily from vehicle accidents.
What are the leading causes of vehicle accidents?
Teens don’t have the experience to identify the dangers they can face when driving. Statistics show what the main causes of vehicle accidents are, and human error is behind 95% of all accidents. Environment and vehicles make up for the rest of 5%, so we can conclude that responsible driving can help us guard ourselves.
Driving too fast, decision errors and false assumptions of other drivers’ actions cause over 30% of accidents. Aggressive driving counts for over 55% of fatal accidents in the United States, excessive speed being the main factor for these crashes.
- Distracted driving statistics
Specialists call distracted driving a national epidemy among your drivers because the most insignificant distraction makes them turn their head away from the road, and cause a fatal accident. A photo, text, snack or call doesn’t worth for your child or anyone else’s life. To understand why it’s crucial to teach teens defensive driving, you need to know what dangers distracted driving brings.
Distracted driving injures 424,000 and kills 3,154 people annually. Talking to passengers and trying to grab something from the car are the most encountered distractions.
1 in 4 crashes in the US involves the use of a phone. By using the phone and trying to identify the manual subtasks the driver has to perform, they are three times more likely to produce a car accident.
Drivers under 20 are more likely to die in driving accidents, crashes making 30% of the fatality cases.
- Drunk driving statistics
Isn’t a surprise that drunk drivers are dangerous, yet thousands of young people continue to drive their vehicles under influence. Often the cost of drunk driving is life. 10,000 people die in alcohol-impaired driving accidents every year.
A fatal crash because of alcohol use occurs every hour. Drunk drivers not only that are unable to make decisions or identify hazards, but they also speed 42% more than sober people.
What to do if your teen causes an accident while speeding under influence? The best decision is to hire a Utah criminal lawyer because they’ll probably face charges and they need professional assistance.
What is defensive driving?
Your child together with the other road participants are humans, and humans often make mistakes. If they become defensive drivers, they’ll focus not only on their actions, but they’ll also anticipate the other road participants’ actions.
Defensive driving is a practice that people adopt to reduce the hazards associated with vehicle use. Defensive driving techniques lower the chances of an incident or collision and prevent fatalities. Teaching your children to be aware while driving ensures that they identify possible dangers and predict other drivers’ actions. They can take pro-active actions to stop an accident or lower its consequences. A good driver always scans the car’s mirrors and looks beyond the vehicle before acting.
How parents can teach their teens to avoid road crashes?
As a caring parent, you need to teach your children how to drive safely. By stressing the following defensive driving techniques, you help them protect themselves from incidents.
Don’t drive too fast for the given conditions
Adverse weather as snow, fog, wet roads and reduced visibility increase the likeliness of an accident. Regardless of the speed limit for that portion of the road, teen drivers should drive at the recommended speed for these conditions. It’s always wiser to driver slower than the speed limit when it’s difficult to see the road.
Pay attention to the following distance
Weather conditions and roadway state influence the following distance. According to the factors they’ll meet on the road, they need to establish what the safe following distance is. Teens may have difficulties in identifying the safe following distance because they lack experience. You instinctively adapt it, and you need to teach your child how to do it. Join your child on the road, tell them when to get out of the way of another driver, and what to do when a driver gets too close to them. By explaining to them what to do when experiencing a certain situation, they’ll better understand how to drive responsibly.
All areas of the road can be a potential hazard
When on the road hazards lurk around the car, so your teen driver should constantly check the mirrors. Beginner drivers tend to ignore the mirrors and focus only on the area of road in front of the car. They need to make a habit from using the mirrors to check the traffic conditions surrounding them.
Hazards don’t warn
A tree on the side of the road, a hill or a bend in the road are perfect hiding spots for animals and obstructions. Inexperienced drivers cannot predict when the road hides hazards because they don’t have experience. Teach your child to slow down whenever they notice something that prevents them from predicting road conditions.
Pay attention to what the other road users do
Not only drivers are possible dangers on the road, pedestrians, and animals can also be. Teen drivers don’t recognise the signs that warn them when a driver or pedestrian poses a risk. Warn your child that a speeding car, an elder or child pedestrian, or an animal can be dangerous, especially when they display erratic behaviours.
Defensive driving doesn’t guarantee that your teen is protected from road accidents, but it reduces the possibility of an accident with over 50%.