As teenagers get closer and closer to driving age, many parents are left wondering how they will be able to afford a new, high-cost insurance premium in order to ensure their new driver. Teenage drivers almost always face high insurance premiums because insurance companies see them as “high risk. ” Statistically, inexperienced teen drivers are likely to engage in risky behaviors, leading to accidents due to: Seat belt use. Teens are the least likely of any age group to wear seat belts. Drunk driving.

Teens are likely to engage in risky drinking behavior, or to share rides with another teenager who has been drinking. Hazard identification. Teens may underestimate the danger present in certain situations, and are less likely that older drivers to adequately assess dangerous situations and know how to properly handle them. Extensive cell phone use is one high-risk behavior exhibited by teen drivers. Not only are teens likely to talk on their cell phones while driving, but they are also likely to send and receive text messages.

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Texting while driving is an increasingly common and highly dangerous behavior, since a person usually takes his or her eyes away from the road in order to read and type text messages. Cell phone use while driving, especially texting while driving, can result in accidents with dire consequences. About 2,600 fatalities and 330,000 injuries each year can be attributed to cell phone distraction. Other startling facts about cell phone use include: Cell phone use dramatically slows a driver’s reaction times and mimics those of a drunk driver.

Drivers speaking on cell phones are 18 percent slower to react to brake lights. More than half of all teens report that they have witnessed another driver texting. More than one-fourth of American teens aged 16 to 17 admit to texting while driving. 43 percent of American teenagers aged 16to 17 have talked on a cell phone while driving. Parents, teachers, and other adults have a responsibility to talk to teenagers about dangerous driving behaviors. Adults should encourage teenagers to ensure their own safety and that of their friends and others on the road.

You can keep your teen’s car insurance rates low by talking with them about safe driving habits, such as never driving while texting or talking on the phone. In addition, insurance companies often provide discounts to good students, since high-performing students exhibit maturity and therefore are statistically less likely to get involved in accidents. For more information about car insurance rates in the Chicago area, visit the website of Chicago car insurance agents Insure on the Spot.