Portland, ME —Recent findings from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reinforce that parents who spend more time, practice in a wider variety of situations and share their safe driving vision, have novice drivers that develop the necessary skills to become safer drivers.
“Teens continue to have the highest crash rate of any age group, so it’s critical that parents are involved and use evidence-based techniques that work,” said Pat Moody, manager of public affairs AAA Northern New England. “These recommended coaching techniques may seem rather obvious, yet research findings show that parents aren’t regularly practicing them. For example, one Foundation study that surveyed parents and teens during the process of learning to drive found:
Nearly 1/2 of parents reported they wanted their teens to get “a lot of practice,” Yet, only about one in four parents mentioned practicing under a variety of situations or conditions, such as in bad weather, heavy traffic, or on unfamiliar roads.
Nearly 1/2 of parents (47 percent) reported that there was still at least one condition in which they were not comfortable allowing their teen to drive unsupervised even after they passed their driving test and got their license to drive independently.
Few parents in the study were observed sharing more complex driving tips—such as visual scanning or anticipating other drivers’ behaviors –with their teen drivers.
Parents play a huge role in helping their teens gain as much experience as possible before they get intermediate licenses and start to drive solo. AAA recommends at least 100 hours. This time is a great investment in your teen’s future driving safety and skills
Parents should be prepared for the task. Before you begin, ask yourself a few questions.
Can you dedicate several hours a week to practice driving with your teen? AAA recommends your teen complete at least 100 hours of supervised practice driving before being allowed to drive solo.