Teens and Texting: Cell Phone Apps Can Help Restrict Usage While Driving!

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Tell your teen they should text “TTYL” before they get behind the wheel.

Teens and Texting: Cell Phone Apps Can Help Restrict Usage While Driving!

The U.S. Department of Transportation notes the use of cell phones while driving contributes to 1.6 million auto crashes each year.  Tell your teen they should text “TTYL” before they get behind the wheel.

Drivers who read or compose texts while driving are 23% more likely to be involved in a car crash than other drivers.  During the 100 Deadliest Days, the days between Memorial Day and Labor Day, accidents involving teens increase 14% compared to the rest of the year, according to the American Automobile Association.  So while your teen is joyriding, as parents, we have to understand the facts and ensure our children do, too.  It is no wonder most of the United States have banned cell phone use while driving.  If you are unsure about the laws in your state, you can learn more about cell phone bans by clicking here.

Parents’ Roles – Safety Starts With You!

Parents should set very specific household rules with their teen drivers.  AAA offers a parent/teen driving contract, which you can find at www.TeenDriving.AAA.com to help guide the process.  The website also contains state-specific information on graduated driver licensing laws and passenger restrictions.

Many states have passenger restrictions for teen drivers, and parents should educate themselves on these laws and stress compliance with their teens.

If you are worried about your teen texting and driving, or to encourage your teen to make the right decisions when driving, there’s an app for that!

  • Cellcontrol: Designed for parents, Cellcontrol is a subscription-based service that features a device inserted under the dashboard and an accompanying app that blocks your teen from sending or receiving texts while driving.It also disables other phone features while the car is in motion, such as using email or accessing the camera. You’ll get a text or e-mail alert if Cellcontrol is deactivated or removed (For Android™ and iOS)
  • Safedrive: SafeDrive rewards you for not texting while driving. Simply open the app whenever you’re behind the wheel, and it will automatically start rewarding you with points you can use toward discounts at participating stores if you’re traveling at least 6 mph.The app tracks the number of points based on driving speed, time spent in traffic and distance traveled. (For Android and iOS)
  • Drivesafe.ly: DriveSafe.ly features a One Tap operation, and auto-on functionality that lets users seamlessly interact with their phone while driving. Drivesafe.ly announces callers by name, reads text messages and emails aloud, and can be set to auto-respond without the driver needing to touch the device. (For Android only)

As traffic crashes remain the leading cause of death for teens and young adults, it is up to you as the parent to identify the safety issue cell phones cause and take action to address it!  Preferred Mutual encourages you to dig deeper into cell phone restriction for your teen driver by leading by example and researching these apps thoroughly before purchase or download.

This information is intended for educational purposes only and is not legal advice and/or an authoritative guide.

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