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Old 09-27-2009, 08:13 AM   #1
AVANTI R5
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Default Don’t Get Your Teen Driver A Car—Sharing Is Safer



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At one time, perhaps a generation ago, some experts preached that car ownership for teen drivers was one of the best strategies for emphasizing responsibility and accountability. If teens had to manage maintenance and other costs for their own vehicle, the logic went, they would be more likely to become safe, attentive drivers—rather than hooligans drag-racing daddy’s car to the hamburger stand.

But today it’s clear that line of thinking is more flawed than ever. Sharing the family car, with some rules in place, is much safer, for a multitude of reasons. One of them: teens are more likely to drive older and smaller vehicles with less protection, and more likely to experience a rollover in an SUV, according to NHTSA. Another: parents are likely to cave in and compromise with a more aesthetically appealing but safety-compromised choice for a teen driver.

New research through the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), building on an AAP survey conducted in 2006, emphasizes the risk with getting a teen driver his or her own vehicle. Such freedom can lead to “a sense of entitlement about driving” and less cautious behavior, according to the new study’s lead author, Dr. Flaura Koplin Winston.

The 2006 study, covering more than 5,500 students at 68 high schools nationwide, found that 70 percent either had their own cars or were the primary drivers of the vehicle they used. Far more of those primary drivers—25 percent, the new study found—were involved in crashes. For teens with shared vehicle access, just 10 percent had been involved in an accident while driving.

In instances where parents had set rules and monitored when and where their teen drivers go, without being overly controlling, there were half as many crashes.

According to the Associated Press, the article has been published in the October issue of the AAP journal, Pediatrics, though it’s not yet available on the journal’s Web site.

“Families need to know that driving is different” from other steps toward independence,” commented Winston to the AP.
Motor vehicle accidents remain the leading cause of death for those aged 16 to 20. According to the AAP, teens 16 to 19 are involved in four times as many crashes as 30 to 69 year olds. Several studies have shown that the highest crash rate occurs in the first few months of driving.

The AAP attributes inexperience, risk-taking, teenage passengers onboard, and nighttime driving as other risk factors. And of course this is in addition to the chances of distraction from texting or talking while driving.

Nearly all states now have graduated driver-licensing programs, with limits on night driving and the number of teen passengers allowed in the first few months.
Further guidance? A set of 2006 recommendations from the AAP for parents still rings true today:
  • Give permission for them to obtain a license
  • Control access to the vehicle
  • Set family restrictions and punishments for infractions
  • Assure that the vehicle is safe
  • Be a driving instructor and supervisor or provide driving lessons
  • Serve as a role model for safe driving
http://blogs.thecarconnection.com/ma...aring-is-safer
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Old 09-27-2009, 10:10 AM   #2
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Good article. When I was a teen it was rare for high school kids to have their own car, and unusual even for college students. We had 1 car for the whole family, including 3 teens. Most of the time I rode my bike or took the bus.
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Old 09-27-2009, 10:45 AM   #3
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Hmmmm

Giving a teen a car is certainly a bad idea.

Allowing them to buy one is what instills pride in the vehicle.
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Old 09-27-2009, 11:40 AM   #4
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The article makes a few valid points, but it also makes a few logical jumps I don't agree with.

The article doesn't take into account reasons for the accident percentage spikes that have little to do with attitude, type of car, etc. For one, if you share a car, you drive it less. That has nothing to do with the safety of an 'aesthetically pleasing' car or a 'sense of entitlement'...And I have absolutely no idea where they get the link between 'giving a teen a dedicated car' and the rollover rates for SUVs.

There's also the bit of logic where it sounds good, and may be statistically true but impractical. If kids need to get to places their parents don't go, and the parents don't work close enough to carpool, buying the kids a car is the only way to go. So if you say sharing is safer than getting them their own car, I would say, "Yeah it is. But them not driving at all is even safer."

In addition, there's a different way to handle many of their concerns. My brother and I both got our licenses on our 16th birthday. A sense of entitlement was never there. A curfew is a curfew, whether you're driving a car you share or not. Rules on where you go, who can ride with you, and what times of day you can drive apply whether you share a car or not. Between my dad's old car, which he promised he wouldn't fix if we messed it up, and a cavalier my aunt gave us, we almost always had a car our parents never drove. They did keep track of it, though, watching maintenance and driving it enough to make sure it was in working order.

Much of what they say is true but completely unrelated to whether the kids have own cars or not.
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Old 09-27-2009, 01:08 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hondaslayer View Post
Hmmmm

Giving a teen a car is certainly a bad idea.

Allowing them to buy one is what instills pride in the vehicle.
Yeah, but we can't let little Muffy work.. she might chip a nail.
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Old 09-27-2009, 01:20 PM   #6
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Obviously this article isn't universally true, but it has some good points. If a teenager buys a car, it's likely that it won't be very good, or safe. But, I know of someone in my high school who sold drugs to get a $30k car, and he did. Also, in some kids, when given a car by their parents, see the trust that the parents have given them along with the car, and don't want to betray that trust. It all depends on the kid I guess.
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Old 09-27-2009, 01:31 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hondaslayer View Post
Hmmmm

Giving a teen a car is certainly a bad idea.

Allowing them to buy one is what instills pride in the vehicle.
Agreed

The danger isn't in letting them have their own car, its in giving them one they don't give a **** about wrecking.
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Old 09-27-2009, 02:26 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim-H View Post
Agreed

The danger isn't in letting them have their own car, its in giving them one they don't give a **** about wrecking.
or giving them one that they have no place driving, like these 16 yr olds with rotated turbo kit sti's.

it all depends on the kid and the parents. alot of rules, driving and otherwise, wouldnt need to be in place if the parents took the initiative to set and enforce.
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Old 09-27-2009, 02:45 PM   #9
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I rocked my parents 1986 Ford Escort when they weren't using it. It wasn't mine, but they let me use it. After a year I was able to buy my own car with my money.
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Old 09-27-2009, 05:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by under5 View Post
It all depends on the kid I guess.
Bingo.



My main gripe with this tripe (like that?) was covered by MrSaabaru. They didn't seem to account form time spent in a vehicle. If I have to beg mom for the Windstar every Friday I'm far less likeley to crash then someone else who is driving to and from school, work, and social events seven days a week.
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Old 09-27-2009, 05:28 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CKxx View Post
Bingo.



My main gripe with this tripe (like that?) was covered by MrSaabaru. They didn't seem to account form time spent in a vehicle. If I have to beg mom for the Windstar every Friday I'm far less likeley to crash then someone else who is driving to and from school, work, and social events seven days a week.
You're also less likely to gain driving experience when you need it most. I got a car as soon as I was 17, have never crashed it beyond repairing it myself (bent a lateral link in the snow), or gotten a speeding ticket. It all depends on the kid. If your an idiot, you're not going to be a good driver. If you're smart and use common sense, you'll be fine. It's not rocket science.

Also, how would you suggest kids do get to these "school, work, and social events seven days a week?"
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Old 09-27-2009, 05:57 PM   #12
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I got my license when I was 19, didn't get my first car until i was 20. I'm only 22 for Pete's sake
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Old 09-27-2009, 07:38 PM   #13
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My dad went in half for my first car. $600 from me and $600 from him and I was the proud owner of an '87 Buick LeSabre with 148k on the clock.

seriously, my parents had been instilling the skills and responsibility of driving since my mom had me shifting the Citation X11 on the way to kindergarten. whether the car is mom and pops, or the kids, it's how much/often/well they are taught that counts.
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Old 09-27-2009, 09:15 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSaabaru View Post
Maybe true. But no better a guess than that you're a jealous brat.
Not true. I had the option of my parents buying me a $5000 used car when I was in the position to get one. I decided to get myself a car loan to get my credit in shape since I was 18 with no credit. Also my parents said if they purchased the car I had to leave it stock. The monthly payments were very small and I had a job. They insured the car and I paid the difference added to their insurance or else I would not have been able to afford it. I was very lucky and happy they were willing to do that.


Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSaabaru View Post
Not true. Mine was a fun, but old buick riviera. 2-door, t-type, first car with the 3800, fully loaded and in good shape but with 120k on the clock. Not a POS, but still a 7 or 8 year old car by time i got it. A few friends who had grades, community service, good behavior enough to earn a scholarship and parental favor, and their parents got them nicer cars with the money they didn't have to spend on college. I'd be hard pressed to argue against that.
I shouldn't have worded it like that, when I said POS I didn't mean the car should be something that runs poorly and is a rusted out turd. I mean a car you can run liability only on and not out a huge chunk of cash on if something happens. Like a cheap well maintained Protege, Cavalier etc
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Old 09-27-2009, 09:32 PM   #15
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Also, if a teen doesn't have their own car, they are probably driving fewer miles. Few miles = few accidents. I would bet if you compared accidents per mile between the 2 groups it would be statistically the same.
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Old 09-27-2009, 10:48 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FunkRider View Post
Not true. I had the option of my parents buying me a $5000 used car when I was in the position to get one. I decided to get myself a car loan to get my credit in shape since I was 18 with no credit. Also my parents said if they purchased the car I had to leave it stock. The monthly payments were very small and I had a job. They insured the car and I paid the difference added to their insurance or else I would not have been able to afford it. I was very lucky and happy they were willing to do that.
I wasn't saying you were. I was only trying to say that none of us know the guy. My example of you being jealous was just to point out that we can't say for sure he's spoiled. Immodest for sure, immature maybe, but spoiled in the sense that he doesn't do anything for the nicer car, we don't know.

Quote:
I shouldn't have worded it like that, when I said POS I didn't mean the car should be something that runs poorly and is a rusted out turd. I mean a car you can run liability only on and not out a huge chunk of cash on if something happens. Like a cheap well maintained Protege, Cavalier etc
There are plenty of kids who deserve a lot because their parents put certain goals and rules out, and the kids meet them all. My parents weren't rich, but my brother and I both were well behaved enough to have nicer cars. If they could have afforded better, we would have had better. While I completely agree with the comments on some boards about the stupidity of giving kids performance cars, my reasoning is for safety, artificial confidence, etc. I have no problem with kids getting nice things as long as they meet some kind of standard for it. So for me, amenities = okay, performance capabilities that can be dangerous = not okay.
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Old 09-28-2009, 01:01 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by MrSaabaru View Post
I wasn't saying you were. I was only trying to say that none of us know the guy. My example of you being jealous was just to point out that we can't say for sure he's spoiled. Immodest for sure, immature maybe, but spoiled in the sense that he doesn't do anything for the nicer car, we don't know.



There are plenty of kids who deserve a lot because their parents put certain goals and rules out, and the kids meet them all. My parents weren't rich, but my brother and I both were well behaved enough to have nicer cars. If they could have afforded better, we would have had better. While I completely agree with the comments on some boards about the stupidity of giving kids performance cars, my reasoning is for safety, artificial confidence, etc. I have no problem with kids getting nice things as long as they meet some kind of standard for it. So for me, amenities = okay, performance capabilities that can be dangerous = not okay.

I see what your saying and maybe yes it was uncalled for to call the kid a spoiled brat. He may be a good kid and his parents can very much afford the purchase price of the car they gave him.
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Old 09-28-2009, 01:24 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by felixk View Post
You're also less likely to gain driving experience when you need it most.
Also, how would you suggest kids do get to these "school, work, and social events seven days a week?"
I pointed out a possible flaw in the study. I don't care what people do.
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Old 09-28-2009, 02:02 AM   #19
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teenagers and motorcycles = bad mix
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Old 09-28-2009, 08:41 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by v8subie View Post
teenagers and motorcycles = bad mix
this i agree with ^^

i have a 6 yr old and he loves my car and is always egging me on to race someone when he's with me in the car. while i hope that he will be responsible when he drives i cringe at the thought of him driving. i will make sure that he works his A&S off for his own car and that there are consecoinces (SP?) to his actions.

so far he's pretty repsonsible about keeping his toys and things organized..as much as a 6 yr old can i guess.

what a parent needs to do is not just trust their kid 100% with whatever they are driving.

i had a friend get pulled for racing - wait for it - get this - his moms chrysler town and country vs another friends subaru 99 rs coupe. while it was funny to see him being asked by the cops why in the world he was racing in a van...his mom and dad were pissed! it cost him an arm and a leg in legal fees and fines.

just goes to show you - THAT A KID CAN BE IRRISPONSIBLE IN ANYTHING!
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Old 09-28-2009, 10:41 AM   #21
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just goes to show you - THAT A KID CAN BE IRRISPONSIBLE IN ANYTHING!
This right here. Doesn't matter what they drive, they may do stupid stuff. It's the driving education that matter's most and teaching your kids properly.

Of course a kid can get into trouble much faster in a Corvette than in a Versa so that still applies but knowing if they get a ticket or bust up the car that there are significant repercussions should help.

I'm never going to own a car that I'd let my kid drive so it's going to have to be their own car or my wife's. She bangs her's up enough anyway.
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Old 09-28-2009, 12:13 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hondaslayer View Post
Hmmmm

Giving a teen a car is certainly a bad idea.

Making them buy one is what instills pride in the vehicle.

Fixed.
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Old 09-28-2009, 12:18 PM   #23
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Fixed.
Close enough,

Now that you put it that way, my parents found the car and told me that I was buying it (86 Opel Kadet)
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Old 09-28-2009, 05:20 PM   #24
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Off topic: my wife was telling me her coworker's 17 year old daughter was pulled over going 105mph in her RX-8. The coworker was asleep in the passenger seat. 1) 17 year old has an RX-8 that she didn't pay for. 2) Teen driver thinks it is ok to go 105mph on the interstate. 3) The teen thought it was OK to do that with their parent in the car. My investigative skills point at a single culprit.

The coworker also bought her 15 year old daughter (no license) a Mitsu Eclipse convertible... that the 15yo promptly backed into some raised edging "turning it around when she was washing it" when mom and dad weren't home. M&D apparently gave her "strict" instructions not to drive the car while they went out.
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Old 09-28-2009, 05:34 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by under5 View Post
It all depends on the kid I guess.
I totally agree.
I was 17 when i got my license in Europe on an first attempt, which does not happen that often. I was one of 2 people in the group of 30 that passed.
I was allowed to use family car on occasions but had to indicate where I was going and when I would be back (no cell phones back then).
Then year later i came over to US and my father bought me a $12k car but he thought that I deserved it and knew that I had pretty solid driving skills plus a head where it belonged.
4 years later he pitched in to my WRX as well. by then i was a much better driver but was still afraid of the WRX for the first month or so of driving. Then came time of excessive autoxing and other driving that enabled me to handle this car at a limit.
Now i'm long out of the house and out of my parent's supervision but they know that even though i can be an aggressive driver at times, they don't have to worry about me too much when I’m behind the wheel.
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