In our Phoenix personal injury law practice, we often see teen drivers whose overconfidence has led to a car accident or one who has been in a car with another teen driver who has been injured as a result of another teen's inexperience. It is no secret that teenage drivers are at a higher risk of collisions than drivers in any other age group because they are inexperienced and likely to not perceive hazardous situations and not know how to avoid or mitigate the consequences. In fact, the risk of having a motor vehicle accident is highest among 16 to 19 year olds, and this age group is most likely to be in a fatal crash. There is not a parent alive who doesn't dread answering a knock on the door to see a police officer bearing bad tidings.
Now the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has created an interactive risk management training DVD created by teenagers for teenagers (http://www.driverzed.org/home/?CFID=246079) that trains them to identify hazards and develop skills to deal with hazardous situations. Driver-Zed 3.0 presents 100 traffic scenarios that challenge teens to perceive dangers that very well might be overlooked by an inexperienced driver, and it demonstrates creative ways to manage these risks. The ZED in Driver-ZED 3.0 is an acronym for “Zero Errors Driving.” The program has been awarded the iParenting Media Award for excellence, and the DVD costs only $29.95, plus shipping.
Some of the scenarios are:
− Child or animal running into the street
− Nighttime driving
− Busy intersections
− Heavy traffic
In addition, there is a Parent-Teen Driving Agreement available at no cost on The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (http://www.cdc.gov/parentsarethekey/danger/index.html) that includes penalties for agreement violation. Parents often feel helpless in the face of teenage overconfidence and inexperience. Now there are more tools available than ever before for your teenager to earn your confidence in his driving. Let's keep our youngsters safe on the road.