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Posts Tagged ‘Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety’

Parents Set Bad Driving Examples for Teen Drivers

Rules of the road violated by adults who should know better.

by on Sep.10, 2009

Courtesy of Liberty Mutual

Nearly 60% of high school students think their parents are the biggest influence on their driving.

Okay boys and girls what are you learning from watching your parents drive?

If the latest survey on safe driving habits is any indication, you are learning plenty. Unfortunately, it is an education in negative behaviors.

Liberty Mutual Insurance has just released an analysis that claims to show that moms and dads are not exactly setting good examples as the drive. Sixty nine percent of parents of teen drivers report they practice at least two dangerous or distracting behaviors while driving, and nearly half do at least three.

The survey is particularly critical of dads, who are more likely to be guilty of unsafe driving habits. Three-quarters of the fathers surveyed admit to at least two distracting or dangerous driving behaviors, compared to 63% of the mothers. Dads are significantly more likely to be distracted than moms are by changing the radio station using the radio dial or tuner (61% compared with 48% of moms) and using a GPS system (39% vs. 26% of moms).

“Teens get safe driving examples and advice from many sources, television ads, driving instructors, friends and family members, but no one more than mom or dad,” says Dave Melton, a driving safety expert with the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety. “And if they grow up watching their Mom or Dad speed, talk on their cell phone, text and email, or pay more attention to what’s on the radio than their driving, they are going to think it’s okay to do the same thing.”

Dads also are significantly more likely than moms to read an e-mail on a PDA (6% vs. 2 %), take and upload pictures with their cell phone (7% vs. 2%), and even post updates to their Facebook or MySpace profiles (4% vs. 1%) while driving.


Drivers More Distracted and at a Much Higher Risk Than They Realize

A new study from the National Safety Council says you overestimate your skills. Cell phones should be banned.

by on Apr.28, 2009

Despite clear evidence of the dangers of using cell phones will driving, national safety regulators are not doing anything.

Despite clear evidence of the dangers of using cell phones will driving, national safety regulators are not doing anything.

The National Safety Council has just cited a study published in the Journal of Safety Research that says drivers overestimate their skills and underestimate distractions caused by other activities while they drive. Particularly dangerous is the widespread use of cell phones.

In January the NSC urged a total ban on that activity, based on scientific estimates that cell phone use while driving contributes to 6% of crashes, or 636,000 wrecks, 330,000 injuries, 12,000 serious injuries, and 2,600 deaths each year. NSC estimates the annual financial toll of cell phone-related crashes at $43 billion.

“Our nation has reached a point where we estimate more than 100 million people are engaging in this dangerous behavior daily,” said Janet Froetscher, NSC president. Froetscher added that the issue is not the type of phone a driver uses, rather it is the distraction caused by the conversation. 

“Hands-free devices do not make cell phones any safer. Several studies indicate that the principle risk is the cognitive distraction. Studies also show that driving while talking on a cell phone is extremely dangerous and puts drivers at a four-times greater crash risk,” she said.  (more…)