Unfortunately, driving experience only comes by actually driving a vehicle, and until that knowledge is gained, allowing a teen to operate a vehicle is a giant leap of faith. Since teenagers receive driving citations at 400 percent the rate of all other motorists on the road, it’s important to minimize the risk of accident whenever possible.
Limit distractions: Minimizing the use of mobile technology is often suggested, but it’s important to realize that using mobile devices while operating a vehicle is actually illegal in the State of Rhode Island. A quick text at a stop sign is enough for any driver to lose sight of a bicyclist or miss a car running a red light. Have your teen practice locking the phone in the glove box or shutting it off altogether while driving, alerts will still be on the phone’s screen upon arrival at the destination when it’s turned back on.
Time of day: The highest incidents of teenage driving-related fatalities happen on weekends from 3 three o’clock in the afternoon until after midnight. If an errand or ride can be given outside of these times, consider this poignant statistic.
Driving others: convenience causes many to overlook this important law when the excitement of another licensed driver in the home becomes reality. It’s important to realize that if carpools are in effect, newly licensed drivers are not allowed to drive someone who is not a family member for six months. Although inconvenient, the law is in place to allow a new driver the time needed to gain experience prior to dealing with distractions from friends and social situations. All it takes is a loud suggestion from the backseat for an inexperienced driver to make a split decision that could cause an accident. Remind your new driver that they are in control of the vehicle. Although a burger might sound tasty, they need to access the situation before taking a split second turn into the drive-thru.
Automobiles are repairable, and repair costs are limited to the maximum possible value of a vehicle. Personal injury on the other hand is more serious. Injury resulting from an automobile accident can be life altering, even deadly. Medical costs and ongoing treatment can be a debilitating burden for some, so whenever possible, it’s better to prevent an accident from occurring at all.
If you or someone you know has been in an automobile accident caused by an inexperienced driver, contact a lawyer experienced in personal injury to discuss your personal situation.
"$1,000,000 settlement of an automobile accident in which our client was hit by a drunk driver."