Experts have long known that when teens make phones calls while behind the wheel their accident risk goes up. Now a new survey reveals that many of these calls actually are with a parent!
Researchers interviewed or surveyed more than 400 teen drivers between the ages of 15 and 18 from 31 states. In-person interviews with 13 teenagers revealed that every one of them who talked on the cell phone while driving talked to their mother or father. Only 1 in 5 said they talked to friends.
A follow-up survey involving nearly 395 teens found that roughly a third of 15 to 17 year olds talked to a parent while driving and among 18-year olds with unrestricted licenses that figure jumped to 50%.
As for texting, up to 8% of 15 to 17 year olds and 16% of 18 year olds admitted they had texted a parent while driving. The teenagers said their parents expect to reach them and they worry Mom and Dad might get mad if they don't answer.
The researchers say parents need to understand the dangers of distracted driving and always ask their children to either call them back or pull over so they can talk.
I'm Dr. Cindy Haines, with health information for your entire family.