Teens, new to driving, have been identified as being at a greater risk of causing accidents than any other drivers.
Statistics show teen drivers in the U.S. between the ages of 15 and 19 are more at risk of vehicle accidents than drivers in any other age group.
Applications have emerged as a new hazard on the road. One app, Snapchat, has been accused of promoting bad driver behaviors. This week, a teenager has been accused of using Snapchat's 'speed filter' to snap a picture of herself going over 100 miles per hour.
Unsurprisingly, she crashed. The teen driver escaped relatively unscathed. However, the victim, now brain damaged, needs 24 hour care.
It is an incredibly sad case and is a situation that could happen to any driver on the road.
What's The Solution?
If you have a teen driver and you wish to educate them on safe driving, then what can you do? Luckily, there is a solution to this problem in the form of... apps!
There are apps that are designed to block certain features of the phone while the car is operational.
If you have a newly-licensed teen, you may want to consider using them.
Because the fact is, the use of cell phones while driving plays a role in 1.6 million auto crashes each year, causing 500,000 injuries and 6,000 deaths.
Let's take a look at a couple of apps designed to change driver behavior by blocking the functions of a phone while the car is in use.
Cellcontrol describes itself as technology to stop distracted driving. It stops practically everything, from texting, messaging, selfies behind the wheel, to social media. There is nothing you could try to do with your phone while your car is running.
Cellcontrol utilizes a combination of a device in the vehicle and an app on the phone. All you need to do is add the mobile phone number to the Cellcontrol Online Account, and a link is sent to download the app.
Once the app is loaded, all you need to do is attach the DriveID to the windshield, making sure the USB port is pointed to the dash.
DriveSafe Mode allows users to keep an eye on the applications that lead to drivers being distracted behind the wheel.
If your teenager is using any applications while driving, you will get an immediate notification that they are doing so. You'll also get a notification if they try to disable the application.
According to their website, 78% of young people have read a text while driving.
All you need to do is create an account, download the app and then link the two together.
Why Does It Matter?
While you should care about the safety of your teenager, you also have a duty to ensure your teen is well-equipped to handle his or her car safely while out in the community. Because the fact is that anyone can be a victim of a crash caused by distracted driving.
Educating your teens on better driving practices is the way forward. If you have a stubborn teen, preventing them from using their phone at all is a great way to approach a situation where they do not wish to stop using their phone.
Don't wish you had have done it; take positive action while you can.
Sarah Bell is a writer based in Seoul.
You can contact her at www.themscript.com