Study says teens are still bad drivers

Posted Dec 3, 2015 by Owen Weldon
Liberty Mutual Insurance and Students Against Destructive Decision released a new study that revealed teen drivers are still bad drivers.
A photo of a steering wheel
A photo of a steering wheel
Melinda Taber
Even though fatalities among teens have fallen throughout the years, the study shows young drivers still have a lot of things to learn.
Across the nation, 1,622 11th and 12th graders participated in a survey and focus groups, and 89 percent of teens consider themselves to be safe drivers, but their actions say otherwise. Among this group, 71 percent of the teens admitted to speeding, and after a year or more on the road, 47 percent report going too fast.
The teens were also asked if they have ever retaliated against another driver when provoked or if they have ever experience road rage, and 31 percent admitted they had.
One thousand parents were also surveyed, and they were not aware of their kids' behavior because 38 percent thought their kids just sped.
Dr. William Horrey, principal research scientist at the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety, said the study revealed gaps in what teens and parents perceive as safe versus the actual behavior the teens display. Dr. Horrey added that the study's results reinforces the need to refocus on the basics and other safe driving habits before it's too late.
Stephen Gray Wallace, SADD senior advisor for policy, research, and education, said the lack of experience behind the wheel is one of the dangers teens face, and modern distractions add to the hazards. Wallace parents can influence how their teens behave and dialogue was the strongest tool in the toolkit.