FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT MAY KEEP TEEN DRIVERS SAFER ON THE
ROAD THIS SUMMER
The NAIC offers tools and resources to help teens drive
save on insurance
WASHINGTON, D.C. (June 18, 2013) -
motor vehicle fatalities happen in summer than any other time of year.
driving statistics are troubling, research
shows teens whose parents set rules are half as likely to get in
an accident. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) has
compiled tips and
resources, including a Teen Driving
Contract, for parents. Educating yourself and your new teen driver
about the risks and insurance implications of unsafe driving can save lives
The NAIC's Teen Driving Contract is a customizable Web interface for
creating a formal agreement between parent and teenager that defines the
rules and consequences associated with driving privileges. Users select
from pre-written rules, such as always wearing a seatbelt and never texting
while driving, and associated consequences, including loss of driving
privileges. Users also can write in their own rules prior to creating a
handy printout for signatures and easy reference.
"As parents, the ultimate goal when our kids start driving is to ensure
their safety and the safety of others. That starts with establishing
expectations," said Jim Donelon, NAIC President and Louisiana Insurance
Commissioner. "The good news is that by setting boundaries, we are making
the roads safer for everyone. As a parent and insurance commissioner, I
know that fewer accidents are a goal we can all get behind."
Inexperience, distracted driving, speeding and drug or alcohol use are
to teen-related crashes. One way to help your teen become a safer
driver is to talk openly about your expectations for when they're behind
- Set a driving
curfew. More than 40 percent of teen
auto deaths occur between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.
- Put a limit on the
number of passengers allowed in your teen's car. For teenagers, the relative
risk of a fatal crash increases as the number of passengers
- Make the cell phone
off limits while driving. Talking and texting on a cell phone can
double the likelihood
of an accident.
- Encourage your teen
to exercise his or her rights
as a passenger. Only 44 percent of teens say they would speak up
if someone were driving in a way that scared them.
Tyler Presnell, founder of the Tyler
Presnell Foundation, knows firsthand the consequences of not speaking
up. Since suffering life-threatening injuries at age 14 when a friend lost
control of the car, Presnell has dedicated his life to raising awareness of
what he calls "disrespectful driving." Presnell is partnering with the NAIC
to help raise awareness about the importance of safe and respectful driving,
especially among teens.
"Respect for driving and common courtesy on the road show you care not
only about your life, but also the lives of others," said Presnell.
"Individuals behind-the-wheel and passengers owe consideration to those
These safety measures also may help save money on auto insurance because
even minor fender-benders can drive up costs.
Keeping Costs Down
- Encourage teen
drivers to keep his or her driving records free of accidents and
moving violations for at least three years. Many companies grant
discounts to "safe drivers."
- Enroll new drivers
in a defensive driving course. Some companies offer discounts for
- Some companies may
offer driver awareness programs, either online or with a smartphone
app for young drivers. Ask your insurance agent or company if there is
a discount for using these programs.
- Encourage teen
drivers to keep their grades up. Many insurance companies offer
discounts or preferred rates for teens at particular GPA levels.
- Ask your insurance
company about an "accident forgiveness" clause that guarantees
premiums will not increase after one minor accident.
- Consider a higher
deductible and only allowing the teen to drive the family's oldest,
least expensive car. The type of vehicle also will affect the policy
premium. SUVs, convertibles and performance vehicles typically cost
more to insure than other cars.
While education and preparation can help, accidents still happen. In the
event of an auto accident, make sure everyone knows what steps to take
to stay safe and protect their identity when exchanging information for a
claim. The NAIC's free WreckCheck app (available at iTunesR
PlayR) guides users through what to do - and not do - after an
accident. The app helps drivers collect necessary information on the spot,
then immediately emails a report to your home and your insurance agent.
Visit InsureUOnline.org for
more teen driving tips and resources, including a downloadable accident