Online Auto Insurance: State Farm Survey Shows Ongoing Teen Driving Dangers

April 11, 2012 (PRLEAP.COM) Business News
Another survey released this month by car insurer State Farm adds to the growing pile of research that links younger drivers to riskier roadway habits, a fact that Online Auto Insurance says strengthens the argument that parents should continue to remind their teens of the need to not drive distracted.

Because of their accident records, teenagers have been labeled high risks, and cheap high risk auto insurance is incredibly hard to find for teenagers, who are already considered the age group that most often engages in the riskiest habits behind the wheel like texting.

Most teens admit to texting behind the wheel, according to the survey of 652 teens conducted for State Farm by Harris Interactive, with 57 percent of respondents saying so. The survey results are also backed by a study released last month from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, which found that the dangerous roadway habit is still highly prevalent among young motorists.

When compared with a similar 2010 survey, the latest State Farm survey show that not much progress has been made in changing teenagers' attitudes toward distracted driving, despite the fact that federal, state and local governments along with insurance and car companies have spent many resources warning the public of the dangers.

April is designated National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, put on by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which launched a national website,, in 2009 to combat the dangerous practice. NHTSA officials cite statistics and studies showing that using a mobile device while driving could be just as bad as drunk driving and delays motorists' reaction time just as severely.


Surveyors found that teens still disagree with government officials' comparison of texting behind the wheel and drinking and driving. In 2012, 35 percent of survey respondents strongly agreed that regularly texting behind the wheel could lead to a fatal accident, while 57 percent said the same about drinking and then getting behind the wheel. The figures were "virtually unchanged" from 2010 (36 percent versus 55 percent).

OAI recommends that parents stay vigilant in prevention efforts with every young driver in their household, whether they have a license yet or not. The State Farm survey showed that simply talking with teens about safe habits on the road can have a positive impact. The AAA study found that having a parent in the car with a teen driver significantly reduces the chances of distracted driving.

State Farm also stressed that parents shouldn't think their teen is out of the woods after they get their licenses. The year following licensure has "the highest lifetime crash risk" for young motorists, surveyors stated, but there is still a steep decline in interaction between parents and teens about driving after a teen gets licensed.

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