Madison,
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October
2016
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Parents are encouraged to talk with teens during National Teen Driver Safety Week Oct. 16-22

American Family Insurance offers Teen Safe Driver Program to help young drivers conquer challenges of the road

Summary

It's National Teen Driver Safety Week and American Family Insurance reminds consumers about talking with your teen drivers. American Family Insurance also offers a Teen Safe Driver Program to help young drivers.

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Parents naturally worry about their children, and one of those times is when they hand over their car keys to a new teen driver. Even the most responsible teen can use a reminder about safe driving habits. And despite what they may say, teens are heavily influenced by their parents.

National Teen Driver Safety Week, Oct. 16-22, is a good time for parents to have an honest discussion with teen drivers about the rules of the road when they are behind the wheel.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) identifies five key topics when talking with your teen drivers:

No Drinking and Driving. All teens are too young to legally buy or possess alcohol, but they are still at risk. Nationally in 2014, one out of five teen passenger vehicle drivers (15 to 19 years old) involved in fatal crashes had been drinking. Remind your teen that driving under the influence of any impairing substance, including illicit or prescription drugs, could have deadly consequences.

Buckle Up. Every Trip, Every Time, Everyone - Front Seat and Back. Wearing a seat belt is one of the simplest ways for teens to stay safe in a vehicle. Yet, too many teens are not buckling up and neither are their passengers. In 2014, there were 763 passengers killed in passenger vehicles driven by teen (15-19 years old) drivers, and 59 percent of those passengers who died were not buckled up at the time of the fatal crash. When the teen driver was also unrestrained, the percentage of those passengers who were not restrained jumped to almost 86 percent. Remind your teen that it’s important for everyone to buckle up on every trip, every time, no matter what.

Eyes on the Road, Hands on the Wheel. All the Time. Distractions while driving are more than just risky – they can be deadly. In 2014, among teen passenger vehicle drivers (15-19 years old) involved in fatal crashes, 10 percent were reported as distracted at the time of the crash. Remind your teen about the dangers of texting, dialing or using mobile apps while driving. But distracted driving isn’t limited to cell phone use. Other passengers, audio and climate controls in the vehicle, and eating or drinking while driving, are all examples of dangerous distractions for teen drivers.

Stop Speeding Before It Stops You. Speeding is a critical issue for all drivers, especially teens. In 2014, almost one-third (30%) of teen passenger vehicle drivers involved in a fatal crash were speeding at the time of the crash. Remind your teen to drive within the speed limit.

No More Than One Passenger at a Time. Extra passengers in a teen’s car can lead to disastrous results. According to data analyzed by NHTSA, teen drivers were two-and-a-half times more likely to engage in one or more potentially risky behaviors when driving with one teenage peer compared to when driving alone. And the likelihood of teen drivers engaging in risky behaviors triples when traveling with multiple passengers.

Teen Safe Driver Program
American Family Insurance offers the Teen Safe Driver ProgramSM, an innovative program available to automobile insurance customers, that uses a combination of technology and parental involvement to help young drivers overcome the challenges of learning how to drive. American Family provides the voluntary year-long Teen Safe Driver at no cost to automobile insurance customers who have a beginning teen driver in their household. This program provides video recordings of risky driving events that are shared only with parents and gives them the opportunity to help their young drivers identify the issues that all new drivers share.

Parents log in to www.teensafedriver.com to view a driving report card, video driving events and get coaching tips. Also included is an objective, third-party assessment of the teen driver’s driving performance compared with other teens. On this site, teens are also encouraged to take the “Safe Driver Pledge,” where they promise to follow specific rules when driving.

By helping parents provide guidance to their teens, Teen Safe Driver is achieving a greater than 70 percent reduction in the frequency and severity of risky driving events among these new drivers.

Just like teens need guidance in other areas of their lives, they also need guidance to become safe, responsible drivers. During National Teen Driver Safety Week, talk with your teen drivers and keep them safer on the road.

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About American Family Insurance
Madison, Wis. - based American Family Insurance is the nation's 13th-largest property/casualty insurance group and ranks 332nd on the Fortune 500 list. The company sells American Family-brand products, including auto, homeowners, life, business and farm/ranch insurance, through its exclusive agents in 19 states. American Family affiliates (The General, Homesite and AssureStart) also provide options for consumers who want to manage their insurance matters directly over the Internet or by phone. Web www.amfam.com; Facebook www.facebook.com/amfam; Twitter www.twitter.com/amfam; Google+ plus.google.com/+amfam/.