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Teenage driving

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In 2005, the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Association) discovered many astounding about drivers age 15-20. These statistics proved that approximately 3,467 drivers, age 15-20, died in car accidents in 2005. This became the leading cause of death for teenagers. Sixteen year-olds were also found to have higher crash ratings than any other age of driver. These statistics worried many adults. Now, politicians and citizens of America have begun fighting to change the driving age. However, I believe the age of the driver is not the root of the problem. If law enforcement and drivers education courses are stepped up, new drivers should have a much easier time on the road.

The NHTSA also recorded that about 23% of all teenage drivers killed in 2005 were drunk or intoxicated. More than half of teenage drivers talk or text on their cell phones while driving. Not to mention how many teens may not fasten their seatbelts. Put all this information together, and you can only imagine how many fender-benders and fatal accidents could be avoided. Although not all states have laws against using cell phones, and wearing seat belts in your car, installing these laws could make a difference. Patrolling more officers on the streets could make a difference as well. It would give drivers a better reason to drive safely, and without distraction.

Not all unsafe drivers are teenagers. There are thousands of reckless drivers in the world, who either never learned how to drive properly, or just don’t care. Although teenagers have the highest crash ratings, take in to consideration how many of those wrecks weren’t actually a teenager’s fault. Someone in another car may not have been paying attention, and happened to hit a teenager. Accidents happen to people of all ages, but we are not about to take cars out of the world just to avoid injury.

Most states require or suggest that all new drivers participate in a drivers education course. These courses help because they give drivers more experience, which allows them to become a better driver. Most people don’t realize that how old a driver is doesn’t matter. However, the quality that does matter is experience. For example, if a fifty year-old man sat behind the wheel of a car for the first time, he would have nearly the same chance of getting in a wreck as a sixteen year-old would. Some people may argue that the man is more mature than the teenager, and therefore would not have the same chance of getting in a wreck. Those people would be correct, however, the man’s turning, parking, speed control, and steering skills would be equivalent to those of a teenager. This boasts a risk similar to that of a teenage driver.

Families, friends, teachers, co-workers, and others care deeply about their dead teens. However, the opinion that the age of a person determines how skilled a driver they are is absolutely incorrect. A driver’s skill should be determined by experience, maturity, and safety, rather than age. Therefore, the law should stay the same; a person is allowed to drive at the age of sixteen after they have earned their license and taken a driving safety exam or driver’s education course. It’s time to put the worries aside and face the facts: age isn’t a factor.



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This article has 4 comments. Post your own!

PayPay said...
Aug. 5, 2010 at 8:13 pm:

Hummm..... well i can say  that i drive and my mama always look at me when i drive off and says drive safe and call me when you get and leave there.. and sometimes i do that than sometimes i just play the forget thing. I mean we all know some teens can not drive but give them some time.  And the teens who can good for you. i mean.. we all need to be careful.. and it sometimes isnt the teens its the grown people lets not for get that. Because i see adluts drive bad and do crazy thing... (more »)

 
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jilld19 said...
Feb. 18, 2010 at 8:07 am:
I think the biggest issue with teen driving isn't so much drivers ed, it's parents making teenagers understand the responsibilities of driving and setting out clear rules. http ://allstateteendriver .com / has a parent/teen driving contract that is a great resource in helping teens understanding what is expected of them as a new driver.
 
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palumbie said...
Sept. 23, 2009 at 2:47 pm:
I would have to disagree with what your view is towards the age of the driver's license. For example, where you said "the man's...would be equivalent to those of a teen." That is true but older people could have a better understanding of what is wrong and right. Thats why I think the driving age should stay the same or get raised to a higher age.
 
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JoCo Girl said...
Sept. 10, 2009 at 3:23 pm:
I agree. Age is not the problem. My sister recently took driver's ed and she stated how many things they do not hit on and describe as well as they should. Whether they were small details or not, they should never be ignored.
 
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