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Automobile crashes kill more teenagers than anything else according to a new study.
Setting a bad example for teen drivers has severe consequences.
It’s a commonly held belief that young people are not interested in cars. As the narrative goes, they’d rather rely on public transportation and play with their iPhones than drive. But a new study released by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s Highway Loss Data Institute tells a different story.
Smokers have a small arsenal of gimmicks to keep deadly cravings at bay, but what about teens addicted to texting from behind the wheel? Now they have “thumb socks.”
Fair warning, if you live in Ohio and text behind the wheel, you could face fines or worse: a suspended driver’s license.
This month has been deemed National Youth Traffic Safety Month, and in an effort to teach young drivers more about traffic safety, AutoMD.com is providing some handy tips about how to deal with breakdowns.
Depressed teenagers are more likely to cause accidents than those who aren’t, according to a study from the journal Injury Prevention.
The aptly-named journal found that among already-risky teenage drivers, those who are depressed are more likely to speed and not wear seat belts, which journal authors believed was a translation of self-destructive behaviors (underage drinking, unprotected sex, smoking) into the realm of driving. Those at risk of mental distress are more likely to “engage in dangerous driving activity,” according to the study.
Over one thousand young drivers were surveyed for this report, as conducted by the Center for Accident Research and Road Safety at Australia’s Queensland University. They believe that a psychological survey designed to screen young drivers for signs of depression could prevent them from obtaining driver’s licenses, thereby minimizing the risk of dangerous driving on the roads.
Problem is, the researchers haven’t exactly determined what this “risky behavior” is—plenty of people admit to speeding, after all, and this narrow definition doesn’t include more dangerous and distracting activities such as using a cell phone. The report leans heavily on self-reported behavior and not concrete, clinical analysis, which could skew results. More work is needed to make a conclusion—but either way, Dashboard Confessional is a band, rather than an activity to partake in while driving.
A new study from MIT has revealed that while distracted driving is a problem for all drivers—and will always be, whenever there’s a bikini car wash or van fire nearby—young people are distracted by different things than the elderly, and as we get older we’re more easily distracted.
Young people tend to stray their attention to in-car stimuli such as cell phones and text messages, while older people draw their attention to sirens and flashing lights—two things that shouldn’t be inside the car, hopefully.
MIT’s AgeLab got these results by placing volunteers inside a driving simulator, then measuring conditions such as heart rate and tracking eye movement. From this data, MIT also found that as people increase in age, they gain a higher element of risk perception; they’re less inclined to drive at night, during rush hour, or quickly, according to researcher Bryan Reimer, Ph.D.
What’s more interesting is the role that technology plays in distracted driving, according to Reimer. His team examined the self-parking feature in the Lincoln MKS, and whether people could be taught to trust such an automated process and give up their sense of self-control, even temporarily. ”In some of our work here we’ve shown that with appropriate training people can begin to trust that technology rather quickly,” said Reimer. “One of the areas we’re looking at right now is how does different levels of education about the technology begin to impact their trust and their desire to use it.”
The conclusion they drew was that technology to fight distraction wasn’t the solution—driver education is. “I don’t think technology combating technology is really going to be an effective solution,” said Reimer. “I think some form of education is desperately needed in the U.S. when it comes to automotive purchases and automotive technology.”
Click the jump to see a video of Reimer’s lab and his research. Also note how it took a genius from MIT to find a good use for a VW Beetle.
[Source: Auto Observer]