10 Rules to Help Keep Your Teen Driver Safe


No Alcohol or Drugs

Obviously: NO. ©iStock/Thinkstock
Obviously: NO. ©iStock/Thinkstock

There was an alcohol-impaired-driving fatality every 53 minutes in 2011 -- that amounts to about one-third of all fatal crashes that happened during that year [source: NHTSA National Center for Statistics and Analysis]. Teens may not legally be old enough to drink (it's illegal in all states to sell alcohol to anyone who is under the age of 21), yet alcohol can be blamed for about 20 percent of fatal automobile crashes when teen drivers are behind the wheel. One in 10 high school students admits to drinking and driving -- and teenagers are drinking and driving nearly 2.4 million times per month, with as many as 81 percent of those teens drinking enough to have blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) higher than the legal limit for adults (0.08 percent is the legal limit) [source: NCIPC].

Insist on a no drinking and no drugs policy for your teen driver, but be sure to provide a safe ride if your teen does choose to drink or needs a way home after choosing to not ride with a friend who is under the influence.