Posted on October 25th, 2018

Vehicle safety features can help protect teen drivers

Here’s a fact that should cause outrage: Car crashes are the No. 1 killer of teenagers.

These young men and women never get to reach their prime. They never get to buy a house, raise a family or build a career. Instead, they are killed right as their adult lives are getting started.

Every single one of these deaths is preventable.

It is easy to feel hopeless about this reality. But that does not accomplish anything. It is better to channel those emotions into outrage — and action — by discovering ways to prevent the next tragedy from ever happening.

This is National Teen Driver Safety Week, a perfect time to come together to help the next generation stay safe on the road.

The obvious steps include talking with your teen driver and making sure that he or she has the proper training and education whenever they are behind the wheel. Visit https://www.nsc.org/driveithome for all kinds of important tips in this area.

But another important piece, and one that hits home for the team at My Car Does What, is turning to advanced safety technology as a possible solution in the fight against teen driver fatalities.

Oftentimes, teenagers drive older, cheaper vehicles. The logic is simple: They’re inexperienced drivers. They might get into a crash or beat up the vehicle with hard use. Better to damage a cheaper vehicle than a newer, more valuable vehicle.

But is that the safest approach?

Newer vehicles have safety technologies such as backup cameras, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, collision avoidance systems and other features that can prevent crashes and save lives. In many ways, our teenagers are the ones who can benefit most from these technologies because they do not have as much experience in everyday driving situations.

So warn your teen about the dangers of impairment, distraction and speeding. But also let them know about the safety technologies that can help them. Visit our main page for a list of all available safety technologies.

It’s also important to let your teen know that these technologies assist the driver, they do not replace the driver. We are not at the stage yet where vehicles drive themselves. A driver must be an alert and attentive at all times, even if his or her vehicle is equipped with lane keeping assist or other helpful features.

Lastly, check out NSC President and CEO Deborah Hersman’s reflection on National Teen Driver Safety Week. Please pass this along to any parents, teachers or coworkers who have young drivers in their lives: https://medium.com/@DeborahHersman/an-anxious-parents-guide-to-teen-driver-safety-2371748823b1