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Teenage drivers, licenses and safety

California parents who have teenagers who have just begun driving should be aware that there is a high chance of their offspring being responsible for a motor vehicle accident during their first months of having a driver's license. According to a study that was conducted jointly by the National Institutes for Health and Virginia Tech University, the likelihood that teenagers will experience a collision or a near miss with another vehicle during their first three months of driving by themselves is eight times more than during the last three months in which they have a driver's permit and are driving with an adult.

For the study, the researchers obtained the participation of 131 parents and 90 teenagers. The subjects were monitored from the moment they obtained a learner's permit to the end of the first year in which they had a driver's license. The vehicles of the teenage drivers were equipped with dash cams so that both the driver and road could be observed. The vehicles also had software installed that was used to record braking and speed. The results of the study indicated that teenagers are more likely to brake too sharply, accelerate too fast and make turns too hard, all of which can result in accidents and near-misses.

According to the lead author of the study, the presence of adults while the teenagers have their learner's permit can inhibit the teenagers from learning certain driving skills. It is necessary to have a better comprehension of how teenagers can be taught how to drive safely when their parents or other adults are not present.

An attorney can often assist clients who have been injured in an auto accident caused by a young driver. In some cases, the parents could be held financially responsible.

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