Do you know who your teen is riding with and how responsible of a driver they are? Are you aware of when that friend received their license and how much practice they have had behind the wheel? If these are things you are unsure of, perhaps you might want to reconsider allowing your teen to get into the vehicle with them, whether it is for a ride to school or even to go out during the weekend.
The truth is, accidents involving teens are far more likely to occur than crashes involving older and more experienced motorists. Teens can be daring and sometimes a bit careless when behind the wheel of a vehicle and the last thing you want is your teen to be traveling with a friend who displays one or both of those characteristics. Did you know that “in their first year driving, one in five 16-year-old drivers has an accident” [Source: Geico]? Another shocking statistic Geico highlighted is that “two-thirds of teen passenger deaths are in vehicles driven by other teenagers.”
Back at the beginning of January, the Des Moines Register reported on a collision that occurred about five miles northwest of Forest City just “hours into the new year.” The news outlet stated that around 2:20 a.m., a Dodge Ram pickup truck was heading in the wrong direction on 120th Avenue when it struck a Pontiac Grand AM head-on. The Grand AM was said to have been occupied by eight people although police were working to determine where each person was sitting and who was driving at the time of the crash. Police stated that in total, there were 10 young adults involved in the wreck ranging in age from 18 to 22 years old. All 10 individuals had to be transported to local hospitals to receive treatment for the injuries they suffered.
How can you help your teen choose the right friends to drive with?
Parents are faced with many different challenges and one of those challenges is to be able to keep up with the crowd their teen hangs out with and know who they should and shouldn’t be traveling with. Now, because it can sometimes be difficult for a parent to weed out the good drivers from the bad, the next best thing you can do is educate your child on how to choose the best friends to travel with. Below are some recommendations on how you can do this.
- Consider having them check in with you before catching a ride with a friend. If you aren’t sure who the person is or what their driving history looks like, perhaps you should consider having your teen catch a ride with someone else or you can go and pick them up.
- Be sure they are experienced and aren’t a newly licensed driver. If you know your teen’s friend just received their license, remind them of the dangers associated with traveling with a newly licensed driver and encourage them to not ride with them until they have had ample time to practice.
- Ask your teen how responsible their friends are. It’s important to have open lines of communication with your teen. Talk to them about how their friends drive and what concerns they have noticed. If you feel that it isn’t safe for your teen to be riding with certain individuals, let them know and explain why.
As much as you would like to give your teen the freedom to choose who they ride with, sometimes, they don’t always make the best decisions. So, rather than allow them to place themselves in what could be a dangerous situation, take the time to talk with them about the risks associated with driving and why they need to make wise decisions when choosing which friends they ride with.
If your teen was involved in an auto accident in Iowa City or a neighboring city and you are in need of legal assistance, contact the Iowa car accident lawyers at Eells & Tronvold, P.L.C. We will be happy to review the details of your matter and provide you with advice on how it should be handled. If your teen suffered any type of injury, our skilled attorneys will determine what they are worth and the steps you need to take to ensure you recover this amount.
You can reach Eells & Tronvold Law Offices, P.L.C. at:
1921 51st Street NE
Cedar Rapids, IA 52402
Phone: (319) 393-1020
Fax: (319) 393-4000