Statistically, teen drivers have the most accidents than any other age group. Young drivers are often inexperienced and not equipped to react properly in emergency situations. They are also prone to drive while distracted, another leading cause of car accidents. Our readers in Austin will be interested to learn how one state is attempting to lower the accident rate for teens in their state.

The state of Minnesota has developed a new program called “Point of Impact.” The goal of the program is to encourage more parental involvement in teaching teens not just to drive, but how to do it safely. State statistic show that traffic accidents are the leading cause of death among teens; more than 100 teens died in traffic-related accidents between 2010 and 2012.

The program would put the parents in the driver’s education classroom right next to their children. The education program will include instruction from law enforcement officials, EMTs and other safety officials and would also include a video that includes stories about how teen accidents have tragically affected the lives of individuals.

According to proponents of the program, teen drivers learn most of their driving habits, both good and bad, from watching their parents. By including the parents in the classroom, it is hoped that the parents will also develop good driving habits and will take a more active role in the driving instruction of their children. State law already requires parents to provide 30 hours of driving instruction to their children, but because the hours are self-reported, there are no guarantees that parents are actually following the law.

Although this is occurring in Minnesota, this type of program could be started anywhere, including Austin. There can never be too many safe drivers, and this program could increase that number substantially. However, there will always been reckless drivers on the road, and for those who find themselves victims of such carelessness have a right to compensation for their losses. An experienced legal professional could possibly help with that.

Source: KAAL TV, “New Approach To Teen Driving Problem” John Doetkott, Nov. 18, 2013