How to Motivate Your Teen to Become a Safer Driver

With summer in full swing and the pandemic restrictions lifted, more teens are holding the wheel. And they have a smartphone.

Phone-related distractions are a major cause of teenage accidents, but the phone is also beginning to provide insights to parents who want to keep young drivers safe.

Through apps from insurance companies and other providers, parents can track teens on the go and see how they drive. The question is how to use this new information effectively.

A long-standing parenting concern is whether and when to use aggressive strengthening or punishment for children. When it comes to teenage driving, there is an increased risk of choosing the right approach. If the tracking app shows that you’re speeding up or using your phone too much while driving, do you deprive your teens of driving privileges or focus on what they’re doing right?

According to the American Automobile Association, summer is the most dangerous time of the year for car accidents, and new teenage drivers are three times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident than adults. Distraction plays a role About 6 out of teen crashes. It has been shown that holding a smartphone while driving increases the risk of a crash or near a crash by up to four times. Also, looking at your smartphone for more than 2 seconds increases the risk of crashes exponentially. Analysis of research on teenage driving and mobile phone use..

Steve Herman has four daughters and sons between the ages of 18 and 25. And they are all still enrolled in his State Farm insurance plan. Harman, a store management consultant in New Albany, Ohio, said State Farm Drive Safe & Save App This is to monitor his young driver and get an insurance discount if he drives without speeding or sudden braking. He and his wife frequently discussed with them about their children’s driving scores. Things have become competitive.

At his home in New Albany, Ohio, Steve and Diane Herman use the app to monitor young drivers such as Olivia, Sitting, and Rachel on the right.


The Wall Street Journal Madim McGarvey

“It quickly turned negative,” Harman said.

“I was nervous about what my score would be,” said her daughter, Olivia Harman, 18,. “You will not receive a text alert while driving, but you will receive a call. We will accept calls while driving.”

A State Farm spokesman said the app will aggressively enhance safe driving behavior by offering premium discounts of up to 30%. Last year, he said, the number of customers registering for the app increased by 67%.Many insurance companies and other companies have developed An app that provides drivers with data on driving performance..

Harman sometimes noticed a period when the app wasn’t displaying driving data. He found that some of his children were turning off the place on their phone.That’s the downside of many driver tracking apps and unobtrusive phone settings Teens can find a way to bypass tracking.. Harman said he has never turned off his cell phone’s location data, but has never logged in to his cell phone’s State Farm app.

Olivia Harman and her father Steve have found that aggressive enhancements work better than focusing solely on her driving score.


The Wall Street Journal Madim McGarvey

New research is emerging Aggressive reinforcement is perfect for driversStill under analysis, according to research from Australia and preliminary findings from researchers at the University of Pennsylvania Data collected from over 2,000 drivers..In their study, one group of drivers received weekly feedback Progressive car insurance snapshot app How to use your cell phone while driving compared to others of your age. Another group received up to $ 50 at the end of the seven weeks if phone usage was the lowest in the demographic group. The other received both feedback and financial incentives.

Yet another group received weekly feedback and weekly incremental incentives. This can add up to $ 50 if the driver’s phone usage is relatively low at 7 weeks. Depending on how they use their phone compared to others of the week, they will make or lose money. They will receive a text notification informing them of the amount of their weekly quota they received or sacrificed.

At the end of the study, drivers who were promised money to keep phone usage relatively low showed a 17% reduction in phone usage compared to the control group. Drivers who achieved weekly revenue were even better, reducing phone usage by 23%. Kit Delgado, Physician in the Emergency Department at the University of Pennsylvania and Deputy Director of the Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics, said:

This App Saves Lives app offers benefits to teens who do not use their mobile phone while driving (excluding navigation, music and hands-free calling).


The Wall Street Journal Madim McGarvey

Ohio’s dad, Harman, decided that he needed to take a more positive approach, so he asked his children to install an app he had been using for some time. This app saves livesReward people for not using their cell phones while driving. Each time you board, those who do not use their mobile phone for purposes other than navigation, music, and hands-free calling will earn points that can be redeemed for gift cards and free or discounted meals. He still uses the State Farm app, but only discusses his child’s score if a refund is given every 6 months.

He said his children responded better to aggressive enhancements than to emphasize scores, and the frequent and concrete benefits of reward-based apps resonated with them. He said it was too early to judge how much their driving had improved, but their scores have been good so far.

Her daughter, Herman, said the app helped her become more aware of her mobile phone usage while driving and could get discounts at her favorite cookie shop. “I’m looking forward to seeing everything I’ve done wrong,” she said.

What you can do

Dr. Delgado of the University of Pennsylvania said it’s more effective to show teens how to get rid of the distractions of drivers associated with the phone, rather than just arguing about not using the phone. What’s more, adopting these practices will also help keep you safe.

Share your thoughts

What is the most effective approach to encouraging teens to drive safely? Join the conversation below.

He followed up on people in previous studies who had dramatically reduced phone use and looked at what they changed. He learned that they had redesigned their driving habits to increase safety. Based on those discoveries, he made the following suggestions:

Enable silent.. The settings on your smartphone automatically turn on silent mode while you drive, instead of turning it on manually every time you drive. Doing this will mute text messages and other notifications while the car is moving.This is possible Will be done on the iPhone And On certain Android phones.. For Android smartphones that don’t have that setting, there are some third-party apps that can mute alerts.

Program the app before driving.. Program your destination into the navigation app, set playlists, and play your favorite songs and podcasts before you drive before you leave the curb.

Buy a phone mount.. Mounting your smartphone at eye level in your car reduces the amount of time you spend looking away from the road and reduces the amount of time you spend working with your smartphone.Some reviews by my colleague Joanna Stern In this column.. Android Auto and


Both built into many new cars, CarPlay also helps reduce phone mess.

Write to Julie Jargon

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How to Motivate Your Teen to Become a Safer Driver

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