10 Rules to Help Keep Your Teen Driver Safe

Curfew: No Nighttime Driving
Driving at night has a higher risk for any driver, so inexperienced drivers should avoid after-dark excursions. ©iStock/Thinkstock

The majority -- 80 percent -- of teens can tell you that drinking and driving don't mix, but only a scant 3 percent know that driving after dark is also dangerous; automobile crash fatalities increase three-fold at night [source: Halsey, Berg].

Nighttime crashes among 16- and 17-year-old drivers most often occur before midnight, but most fatalities happen between midnight and just before 6 a.m. Distractions from teen passengers, as well as driver fatigue, decreased visibility, inexperience and drug and/or alcohol use are most often to blame [source: National Safety Council]. To combat nighttime driving crashes, most states with graduated driver's license (GDL) programs restrict new drivers to driving under certain conditions, such as daytime-only, as well as set the number of passengers a newly licensed driver may have with them until they are fully licensed [source: Chen, National Institutes of Health].

Nearly three-quarters of parents of teen drivers favor after-dark driving restrictions, but even your teen participates in a graduated driver's license system that has such restrictions, consider setting your own curfew, and enforce it [sources: NCSL, GHSA].