Teen Driving Myths...


Teen Driving Myths

Myth: I donít need to wear a safety belt because Iímnot going far and I wonít be going fast.
Fact: Most crash deaths occur within 25 miles of home and at speeds less than 40 miles per hour. Everyday driving--from just one friendís home to another, to school or to the store--poses the greatest danger. Always buckle up.

Myth: Traffic crashes are random, isolated events that cannot be prevented.
Fact: Specific behaviors are associated with teen traffic crashes. Inexperience combined with speed, alcohol and/or drug use, not wearing safety belts, distracted driving (cell phone use, loud music, other teen passengers, etc.), drowsy driving or nighttime driving contribute to the high percentage of teen crashes and preventable deaths.

Myth: As long as you use a hands-free device for cell phones, youíre safe.
Fact: Research indicates that whether it is a hands-free or hand-held cell phone, the cognitive distraction is significant enough to degrade a driverís performance. This can cause a driver to miss key visual and audio cues needed to avoid a crash.

Myth: Teens are safer with more passengers in thecar to help watch traffic.
Fact: Crash risk for teenage drivers increases significantly with one, two, or three or more passengers. With three or more passengers, a teenís fatal crash risk is about three times higher than when a beginner is driving alone. The presence of passengers is a major factor in the teenage death toll. About two-thirds of all teen crash deaths that involve 16-year-old drivers occur when other teens are passengers.

Myth: Some teens believe marijuana enhances driving ability.
Fact: Marijuana use diminishes many skills required for safe driving: alertness, the ability to concentrate, coordination and reaction time. These effects can last for up to 24 hours after smoking marijuana. Marijuana use can make it difficult to judge distances and react to signals and sounds on the road.

Myth: It is safer to drive during the night when thereis less traffic.
Fact: Four of every 10 deaths of teens in motor vehicles occur between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.

Myth: Texting while driving is a safer alternative to talking on a cell phone while driving.
Fact: Texting while driving takes the driverís attention away from the road, which can lead to crashes. A recent study found that text messaging while driving causes a 400 percent increase in time spent with eyes off the road. No one should have to worry that other drivers are focused on texting instead of traffic.