Throughout the dangerous holiday driving season, hundreds of teen drivers will be involved in automobile accidents. Allstate Insurance Company urges parents to give a gift that could help their teens arrive home safely for the holidays by completing a parent-teen driving contract available at www.allstate.com/teen.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), December 23 and 24 are two of the four deadliest days for drivers. Data shows teens are more likely to be involved in accidents than more experienced drivers. Teen drivers between the ages of 16 to 20 were involved in approximately 900 vehicle crashes in the month of December, 2006 alone.
As parents across the country fulfill teens’ holiday wish lists, Allstate is encouraging them to make its InteractiveParent-Teen Driving Contract a complement to the popular handheld gadgets they’ll be giving. Cell phones, video game units, MP3 players and other popular mobile devices create distractions for teens behind the wheel. Using these devices while driving is especially dangerous during a season in which traffic is heavier, and in many parts of the country weather conditions are adverse.
“For more than 10 years now, car crashes have been the No. 1 killer of teens, and the holiday season is a very dangerous time for teen drivers,” said George E. Ruebenson, president, Allstate Protection, Allstate Insurance Company. “Allstate believes this statistic must change. Our Interactive Parent-Teen Driving Contract helps parents initiate a meaningful dialogue with their teens about the importance of being responsible behind the wheel of a car.”
The contract, available at www.allstate.com/teen, is the centerpiece of a national awareness campaign which enables parents to comfortably discuss safe-driving practices. A recent study published by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development indicates intervention materials, including a parent-teen driving agreement for newly licensed drivers reduces high-risk driving behaviors.
The contract includes ‘agreements’ and ‘consequences’ for eight categories, including: speeding and tickets; time of day; crashes; number of passengers; drinking and driving; seatbelts; cell phones / music / other distractions and grades.
“Instead of giving your teen a gift they might return, make time to talk about safe driving principles and give the gift that makes sure they will return,” said Vicky Dinges, Allstate assistant vice president of Public Social Responsibility and mother of a teen driver.
While the Allstate Parent-Teen Driving Contract provides a great holiday gift, as well as an effective tool to promote safe teen driving, the holiday season is also the perfect time of year for parents to model safe driving behavior when they are operating an automobile. According to a recent survey by The Allstate Foundation, 89 percent of teens say their parents are influential in encouraging safer driving. Studies show teens are more likely to put down the phone and MP3 player, wear a seat belt and follow the rules of the road if they see their parents do the same.
Since its launch, the Allstate Teen Safe Driving campaign has generated endorsement of celebrities including Hall of Fame pro-football legend John Elway; Jason Wade, lead singer of the multi-platinum band Lifehouse; and NASCAR driver Kasey Kahne. Elway, a father of four and now a high school football coach, recently partnered with Allstate on a national education campaign to motivate parents to “start the conversation” with their teens. Wade’s song, “From Where You Are,” serves as the soundtrack to Allstate’s teen safe driving commercial, “Tail Lights,” which will be featured in movie theaters across the country in late December. In recent months, Kasey Kahne has visited schools to help educate teens about the dangers of unsafe driving practices and encourage them to speak with their parents about the issue.
The Allstate Foundation has been focused on teen driving as a priority since 2005. The program is designed to make smart driving socially acceptable to teens by surrounding them with messages that help change the way they think and act when in a car. The Allstate Foundation is an independent, private, non-profit organization funded by subsidiaries of The Allstate Corporation.
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE:ALL) is the nation’s largest publicly held personal lines insurer. Widely known through the “You’re In Good Hands With Allstate®” slogan, Allstate helps individuals in approximately 17 million households protect what they have today and better prepare for tomorrow through approximately 14,600 exclusive agencies and financial representatives in the U.S. and Canada. Customers can access Allstate products and services such as auto insurance and homeowners insurance through Allstate agencies, or in select states at allstate.com and 1-800 Allstate®. Encompass® and Deerbrook® Insurance brand property and casualty products are sold exclusively through independent agents. The Allstate Financial Group provides life insurance, supplemental accident and health insurance, annuity, banking and retirement products designed for individual, institutional and worksite customers that are distributed through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, financial institutions and broker-dealers.
Laura Strykowski, 847-402-5600