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Parents Are the Key to Safe Teen Drivers

Teen Drinking and Driving, A Dangerous Mix

CDC Vital Signs Learn Vital Information on teen drinking and driving. Read CDC Vital Signs.

Nearly one million high school teens drank alcohol and got behind the wheel in 2011. Teen drivers are 3 times more likely than more experienced drivers to be in a fatal crash.

Learn how to prevent teen drinking & driving

Car crashes—the #1 killer of teens—take about 3,000 young lives every year. As a parent, you should know that the main cause of teen crashes is driver inexperience. All new drivers—even straight-A students and "good kids"—are likelier than experienced drivers to be involved in a fatal crash. It's a fact.

The good news is that you can make a difference by getting involved with your teen's driving. Take advantage of the "Parents Are the Key" tools and resources. Learn about the most dangerous driving situations for your young driver—and how to avoid them.

Steer Your Teen in the Right Direction

As a parent, you have the greatest influence over your teen's behavior. In fact, leading experts believe parents play a key role in preventing teen car crashes and deaths. Take the first step: Talk with your teen about staying safe behind the wheel. Then, keep the conversation going. You can steer your teen in the right direction, and "Parents Are the Key" has proven steps that can help.

Crash Facts

  • Teen drivers are four times likelier to crash than older drivers.
  • Crash risk goes up when teens drive with other teens in the car. Nearly two out of three teen crash deaths that involve 16-year-old drivers happen when a new driver has one or more teen passengers.
  • Night-time fatal crash rates for 16-year-olds are nearly twice as high as daytime rates.

Did You Know?

Mother and son sitting on staircase

Motor vehicle crashes can happen to anyone—even "good" teens. ALL new drivers lack experience and are, therefore, likelier to crash. Take these proven steps to reduce serious injury and death:

  • Extend your teen's supervised driving period.
  • Set the rules of the road.
  • Enforce the rules with a parent-teen agreement.

 
1 in 10 teens in high school drinks and drives.
Contact Us:
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC)
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    Atlanta, GA 30341-3717
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    TTY: (888) 232-6348
  • Contact CDC–INFO
Parents Are The Key
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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention   1600 Clifton Rd. Atlanta, GA 30333, USA
800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636) TTY: (888) 232-6348 - Contact CDC–INFO
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