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A new survey indicates just how important parental influence is in shaping safe driving behavior and preventing teen driver-related accidents. Teenagers, whose parents exhibit poor driving practices like speeding, or talking on a cell phone while driving are much more likely to adopt the same practices.

In the survey of 1,700 teenagers, the majority admitted that they did engage in poor driving practices while driving. For instance, 9 out of 10 teen drivers said that they used their cell phones while driving for having conversations, while 94% admitted that they drove at excessive speeds. In most of these cases, the teenagers said they had noticed their parents exhibiting the same driving practices.

What is even more worrying is that many of the teenagers in the survey admitted that when they saw their parents exhibiting poor driving practices, they rarely ever spoke up about it. Only about 21% of the teenagers in the study said that they would speak up to stop dangerous driving practices like driving while intoxicated or talking on a cell phone while driving.

Such poor parental influences are even more dangerous when you consider that teenagers are extremely impressionable, and judge what their parents do to be morally acceptable. Poor driving like this may be legitimized in the eyes of teenage children, and not so surprisingly, these teenage drivers may be much more likely to exhibit the same kind of careless behavior at the wheel.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that automobile accidents are the number one cause of unintentional fatalities for teenagers in the United States. In a situation like this, parents should be setting better examples for teenagers, and not driving them down the path to unsafe driving.

If you have been involved in a car accident in Texas, speak with an experienced Austin car accident attorney at Watts Guerra Craft.

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