Your Teen's Distracted Driving Can Raise Your Insurance Rate
Distracted driving is a huge issue these days–particularly as related to the causes of teen driving accidents. Recent findings from a study analyzing 1,700 crash videos showed that distraction played a role in 58 percent of the accidents involving teen drivers.
Shifting attention away from driving not only puts your teen driver at risk, but it also puts passengers and other drivers on the road at risk. Additionally, an accident caused by distracted driving may significantly increase the car insurance rate you pay as well. Therefore, talking to your teen about the causes, consequences, and ways to avoid distracted driving can help keep your teen–and others–safe on the road. It can also prevent an increase in your auto insurance premium due to a traffic violation or accident related to distracted driving.
While texting and talking on a cell phone may seem like obvious causes of distracted driving among teens, they aren't the only things that can distract a young driver's attention. Fiddling with other electronics, eating, drinking a soda, putting on makeup, taking selfies, or being distracted by other teens riding in the vehicle can divert your teen's attention away from the road and surrounding traffic while driving.
Besides the property damages, injuries, and potential deaths that can occur as the result of a vehicle accident related to distracted driving, you will likely see your car insurance rate go up. While state laws and insurance regulations vary, some states now consider distracted driving a traffic violation. So if your teen gets a ticket for distracted driving, there's a good chance that you'll be paying more for your car insurance.
Although paying careful attention to the road and keeping both hands on the wheel help keep a vehicle under control, it's also important to teach your teen ways to avoid a distracted-driving accident.
Explain how dangerous any type of distraction can be while driving. Make your teen aware of the potential human and financial consequences that a distracted-driving accident can cause.
Instruct your teen to pull off the road if he or she wants to check an email or text and reply. Tell your teen to park in a safe spot away from traffic and turn off the vehicle before messaging a friend.
Encourage your teen to look up directions when driving to an unfamiliar location beforehand instead of using the GPS while driving. This avoids the need to look away from the roadway.
However, technology can help prevent accidents too. Some newer vehicle models come equipped with technologies that read out GPS instructions and text messages so that drivers can keep their eyes on the road where they belong. Other car manufacturers offer programs that allow parents to block incoming calls and texts while a teen is driving.
Set rules about transporting other teens as passengers. Peer pressure often leads teens to indulge in riskier behaviors that they might not do otherwise. If you allow your teen to drive with friends in the vehicle, limit passengers to one–although reports show that even one teen passenger increases the risk of a distracted-driver accident. Each additional teen passenger increases the crash risk more.
For more information on how distracted driving can impact your insurance rates, contact an insurance company like Cache Valley Insurance Inc.