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Talking with Your Teen
Raise a Safe Teen Driver
Tips for safer motorcycling
a Safe Passenger
Drive Alive co-founder
Teach your teen to be a safe passenger
Almost half of traffic accident deaths are passengers, not drivers. This
means your teen has the same
fatality risk riding with a teen driver as she does driving.
Local teens surveyed said that they carry other teen passengers in the car
more than 50 percent of the time when they drive. The risk of a deadly crash
increases dramatically when there is a teen passenger in the car with a teen
driver; the risk increases with each additional teen passenger. The reason?
Friends distract the driver. It’s as simple as that.
Consider delaying the time when your teen starts driving other teens around.
Think of the awesome responsibility on your shoulders when you authorize
your teen to drive with friends in the car. Statistically, the risk for both
the driver and the passenger are increased. So it may make sense to wait a
year or more before allowing your teen driver to have passengers, and even
then to limit the frequency and circumstances.
At the same time, teach your teens to be smart passengers.
Teach them to
speak up if the driver is going too fast, or doing something hazardous or
reckless. Let your teen know that a passenger’s words carry a lot of weight
with most teen drivers. So urge your teen to speak up or even get out of a
car that is being driven dangerously. If more teen passengers would speak
up, we’d have fewer tragic deaths on county roads.