CURE Auto Insurance Provides Driving Safety Tips for Parents and Teens -- May is National Youth Traffic Safety Month

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According to the Center for Injury Prevention and Control, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among U.S. teens, accounting for more than one in three deaths in this age group. Most teen accidents can be easily avoided. May is National Youth Traffic Safety Month, and accordingly, CURE Auto Insurance provides the following list of tips for teens and parents to ensure teens stay safe behind the wheel.

According to the Center for Injury Prevention and Control, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among U.S. teens, accounting for more than one in three deaths in this age group. Most teen accidents can be easily avoided. May is National Youth Traffic Safety Month, and accordingly, CURE Auto Insurance provides the following list of tips for teens and parents to ensure teens stay safe behind the wheel.

Safe Driving Tips for Teens:
1. Put your cell phone away. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 6,000 people died in 2008 in crashes involving a distracted or inattentive driver, and more than half a million were injured. Statistics show that talking on the phone or texting while driving is just as dangerous as driving drunk. Next time you're tempted to use your phone in your car, ask a passenger to send a text for you or pull off to the side of the road if it is urgent.

2. Don't allow too many friends in your car. Getting your license is an exciting time and teens are always ready to drive their friends around. However, according to the NHTSA teens are 15% more likely to get into an accident with more than two friends in the car than if they were alone. Driver distraction is a huge issue for new drivers, so remember to stay focused and minimize distractions in your vehicle.

3. Don't drink and drive. Although this seems obvious, according to the NHTSA, teens are at far greater risk of death in an alcohol-related crash than the overall population, despite the fact that they are below the minimum drinking age in every state. Do not get behind the wheel of a vehicle if you have been drinking or get in the car with someone that you suspect has been drinking. This split second decision has changed the lives of millions of teens.

4. Wear your seatbelt. Despite being the most at risk group for accidents, teens also have lower seatbelt use rates than adults. Take charge by letting your friends know when they get into your car you won't drive until everyone has a seatbelt fastened.

5. Familiarize yourself with your car. Learn how to properly maintain your car, and know how to check and add oil and windshield washer fluid. Be aware of indicator lights on your vehicle and what they mean. In addition, add the number for AAA or a local dispatch number to your cell phone in case of emergencies.

Parents are instrumental in the development of safe teen drivers. The best drivers come from the combined efforts of teens and their parents. Therefore, it is crucial that every parent talks to their teen about safe driving. To help in this process, CURE Auto Insurance also provides tips for parents that have teen drivers.

Safe Driving Tips for Parents:
1. Practice makes for better drivers. While teens have their provisional licenses allow them to get as much practice as they can with a parent in the car. Not only will they get hands on experience but a parent can guide them along the way and be there to answer any questions.

2. Know your teen. Not all teens are ready to drive at the same age. Teenagers mature, develop emotionally and become responsible at different ages. Parents need to truly know their teen in order to determine when they are ready to handle the responsibilities that come with driving.

3. Be patient. No matter how smoothly things are going with teen drivers, mistakes can still be made-Although it may be hard, be patient, as long as no one was seriously hurt, most minor situations can present learning opportunities.

4. Set rules- and stick to them. It is known that teens make safer choices about all sorts of behaviors when their parents pay close attention to them and communicate information clearly. Make it known that rules are set in place for safety reasons, not control, and provide motivation for teens to act responsibly.

5. Lead by example. Follow the rules of the road. Always wear a seatbelt, never talk on the phone while driving and don't speed. It is easier for teens to respect rules put in place if everyone in the family must follow them.

For more driving safety tips, please visit http://www.CURE.com or call 800-535-CURE.

About CURE
Citizens United Reciprocal Exchange, (CURE) is a not-for-profit reciprocal exchange headquartered in Princeton, N.J. Founded in 1990 by New Jersey Insurance Commissioner James J. Sheeran and award-winning insurance expert, Dr. Lena Chang as an answer to the insurance crisis in New Jersey, CURE continues to lead the way as the not-for-profit solution for responsible drivers and the "cure" for the continuously evolving auto insurance problems. CURE is currently available in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. More information can be found at http://www.CURE.com or by calling 800-535-CURE.

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Crystal Decotiis
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