Being the mother of a teenage driver means that there are things that I need to be aware of in this day and age. This is exactly what being the parent of a young driver is all about!
Did you realize that teens and young adults have higher crash rates than any other group of drivers on the road today? Young people, ages 16 to 24, have more motor vehicle crashes that are the leading cause of work-related fatalities in the United States. So, if my son gets a job driving, say for a pizza delivery service, the chances of him having an accident are pretty high and if he does have an accident, the chances of him getting killed are just as high!
Since 22% of all workplace fatalities happened to kids between the stated age ranges and 67% of the fatalities were when the kids were driving, federal child labor laws were set in place to significantly reduce youth under the age of 18 from driving while at their workplace.
Eighteen-year-olds are typically allowed to drive on the job, but still lack the maturity and driving experience it takes to be as safe on the roadways as more experienced drivers. The younger the driver, the more distractions there are that can increase the risk of injury or death to them as a driver/
Driving risks to youngsters include the following according to the CDC (Center for Disease Control):
· Experience while driving
· Inconsistent seatbelt usage
· Tendency to overestimate driving skills
· Desire to meet employer time expectations
· Distracted driving, such as talking on cell phones, texting, adjusting automobile controls, eating and/or drinking, music, and interacting with other passengers
· Immaturity such as poor impulse control, judgment and decision-making skills
· Difficulty is recognizing and responding to traffic hazards
As a parent, it is significantly important to know and understand these hazards and risks. By realizing this list of concerns, you can speak with your child and advise them. In order for them to be safe driving on the job, you need to be aware of their skills and do whatever it takes to make certain that their skill level is on point. If not, perhaps not allowing them a driver’s license is the best suggestion of all.
Remember, you are still responsible for your teen! If you are not aware, what makes you believe that your child should be and will be when the time comes for them to drive on the job?