News Column

According to Michael Cerussi, Fatality Risks Threaten Teen Drivers' Safety

Apr 1 2013 12:00AM



NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 04/01/13 -- Michael Cerussi, founder of Cerussi Driving School, is speaking out on a new article that details just how risky putting a teen behind the wheel can be. The article discusses several major recent crashes, including an accident that left 21-year-old Chance Bothe with plastic eye sockets, metal rods in his legs, and a reconstructed nose. The statistics about teen drivers and crashes continue to rise, especially when texting is involved.

After a months-long, multi-million dollar recovery period, Chance Bothe is able to walk again, but he and his family note that many parents of young drivers never have this good fortune. This was emphasized by a week when three crashes in three days occurred, killing 15 teenagers.

Speaking out about what his son went through after his truck tumbled down a ravine as he sent a text message, Chance's father states, "I don't want any parent to ever go through this. You gotta know, my son is everything to me."

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, motor vehicle crashes are still the top cause of death for those ages 15 to 20, even as traffic fatality rates have dropped in recent decades. Though the figures as a whole have shifted, teen drivers are still at significant risk each time they get behind the wheel of a car. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention note that in 2010, crashes claimed the lives of about 2,700 adolescents ages 16 to 19, which amounts to about seven per day. Nearly 282,000 others required treatment for injuries that occurred during accidents. Drivers ages 16 to 19 are three times more likely than older motorists to get into a fatal crash.

Michael Cerussi comments on these shocking figures stating, "Hopefully these numbers will help teen drivers and their parents realize just how serious this problem has become. Any time you get behind the wheel of a vehicle, you're responsible for your own safety, as well as the safety of every other motorist on the road. When you're a young driver, you're still trying to get used to the various hazards that come at you quickly, such as a car that has stopped short or an animal that leaps out into the road. It's very difficult for a young driver to navigate these dangers successfully when they're also texting."

Many of the crashes that have occurred in recent months fit the typical profile of high-risk situations. For instance, accidents are more likely to occur during the first few months after a teen has obtained his or her license. More than half of teen deaths from crashes occur on weekends, and the death rate for male drivers and passengers ages 16 to 19 is nearly double that of females.

Nervous parents can take comfort in new technology that is helping to keep teen drivers safe. A graduated licensing system, which slowly expands teens' driving abilities over time, helps to lower the risks for young motorists. In addition to this program, parents can also choose to equip their kids' vehicles with tracking technology, which enables them to monitor their son or daughter's driving habits in real time. There is also a webcam that sits on the rear-view mirror of the car and records what happens inside and outside of the vehicle, thus providing a "driving report card" to anxious parents.

Young drivers can also rely on help from an app that they install on their cell phones, which is then placed in the car's cup holder. The app scores the driver's abilities based on acceleration, cornering, and braking. At the end of an outing, it offers feedback, thus helping the motorist to improve.

Michael Cerussi comments on these innovations. "This technology is important when it comes to protecting young drivers and putting their parents' minds at ease. Inexperienced motorists must learn the risks of careless driving, and must learn how to keep themselves safe each time get they behind the wheel." Michael Cerussi also states that it is up to parents to enforce rules to help keep their children safe as they begin driving on their own.


Michael Cerussi is the owner and founder of Cerussi Driving School, which he established in 1998. Since the beginning of the program, the organization has focused on teaching young motorists the importance of defensive and safe driving principles. The curriculum also focuses on the dangers of driving under the influence. The school employs 20 professionals who offer students high quality driver education.

Source: Marketwire

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