Speeding, Cell Phones and Text Messaging While Driving Top the List
(LOS ANGELES, July 10, 2007) — A new survey on teen driving done by AAA and Seventeen magazine says that 61% of teens freely admit to risky habits while driving a vehicle including text messaging, talking on cell phones, speeding and drinking and driving.
The nationwide survey of 1,000 16 and 17-year old teen drivers conducted in April reveals that:
- 66% say they have exceeded speed limits by 10 mph or more
- 51% talk on the cell phone while driving
- 46% text message while driving
- 11% have driven after drinking alcohol or using drugs
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading killer of teens and these types of behaviors can set the stage for tragedy,” said Patrice Frazier, managing director of community affairs for the Automobile Club of Southern California. “Teens are inexperienced drivers who need to focus on driving and not be distracted by friends or other activities.”
California’s Graduated Driving License Law requires teens not to carry passengers under the age of 20 or drive between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. unless accompanied by a licensed driver age 25 or older for the first year after they receive their license (or until they reach age 18).
Parents can help teens become better drivers,” said Frazier, “by exhibiting good driving skills and avoiding distractions like electronic devices while driving. Parents should talk to their teens about why it’s important to focus on driving, obey traffic laws and make cell phone calls or text message only when they reach their destination.”
The Auto Club offers teen driving classes through the Auto Club Driving School. Information is available at AAA.com. DriverZED, a DVD driving risk assessment program for teens is available at Auto Club offices for $5 for members and $7 for non-members.