It’s important for parents to allow their children greater levels of independence as they grow up so they can develop as individuals and gradually take on the responsibilities of adulthood. But as exhilarating as it can be to see children becoming independent adults, the process can be terrifying for parents, especially when it comes to driving.
Learning to drive is an important rite of passage for millions of American teens. Typically, after just a year of adult-accompanied driving with a learner’s permit, teens as young as 16 can legally hit the road on their own. It’s a day most teens look forward to – and millions of parents dread. Unfortunately, the parents’ fears aren’t unfounded.
The statistics on teen driving from the CDC are sobering: Car crashes are the leading cause of death for U.S. teenagers, with more than one in three deaths in this age group occurring in motor vehicle accidents. In a recent year, approximately 3,000 teenagers in the U.S. were killed and more than 350,000 were hurt in car crashes.
Drivers ages 16 to 19 are four times more likely than older drivers to have a car accident, and many crashes are caused by excessive speed. While statistics like these make it tempting for parents to keep the car keys away from their teens, this isn’t a practical solution in many parts of the country, and it’s important for teens to learn responsible driving habits.
Parents can’t always be there when their teens are behind the wheel, but thanks to machine-to-machine (M2M) technology advances, it is possible for parents to keep tabs on their teen drivers. GPS signaling capabilities and instant communication tools now make it possible for parents to know where teen drivers are at all times and even receive alerts online or via mobile devices when teen drivers exceed a pre-set speed limit.
With a technology tool like the Securus eZoom, a light, durable, multifunction GPS tracker that is easy to install in a vehicle, parents can instantly receive information on their teen driver’s whereabouts, get alerts when a parent-defined speed limit is exceeded and receive notification when teens arrive safely at their destination. Using Assisted-GPS technology, eZoom works even where GPS signals are weak, providing parents with added peace of mind and giving teens a way to check in with an instant alert button.
When it comes to teen driving, there’s no substitute for careful parental oversight and instruction, and as parents, we do our best to make sure our teen drivers are equipped for safety when they hit the road without us. But no matter how much we’ve prepared, watching a teen driver back out of the driveway and drive out of sight is still a cause for major anxiety for millions of parents. Technology tools like eZoom can make it a little easier by giving parents a way to keep tabs on teen drivers, even as teenagers exercise their independence.
About the Author
Christopher Newton is President and CEO of Securus, Inc., (www.SecurusGPS.com), a leading mobile safety and security products and services company and proud makers of eZoom, SpotLite and eCare+Voice. Securus has developed a complete M2M (machine-to-machine) technology platform, enabling the company and its market partners to deliver customized hardware and software solutions.