Special Report: Tech tools to keep teen drivers safe - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Special Report: Tech tools to keep teen drivers safe

TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for teenagers in America. Teen drivers are three times more likely to die in a crash than adults.

Parents of teen drivers know the fear that comes with sending them out on the road alone for the first time, but new technology is helping parents keep tabs on their young drivers, even whey they cannot be in the car.

Some parents have installed dashboard cameras, similar to those in police cars, inside their young drivers' cars. Some cameras even have systems that start recording only when the driver does something deemed unsafe.

"It gave me the comfort to let him start driving alone," said Catherine Gabell, who installed a camera in her son Jeff's car.

Video from the camera is sent to a professional, who forwards it with his advice to Gabell. Jeff says he was not happy about the camera at first, but thinks it has made him a safer driver.

"You know that if you screw up they're going to catch you and it's going to get reported," said Jeff. "It's a good thing I think. It's helped me."

The in-car camera system and professional advice cost about $900 per year.

Another option available to parents is known as ‘geofencing.' The technology uses GPS data to determine the speed and location of the vehicle. If a teen driver goes too fast, or exits an area specified by parents, they are notified.

"It can actually let the parent log onto a website and see where the car is," said Carroll Lachnit of Edmunds.com.

Some car manufacturers incorporate geofence technology into their vehicles or offer it as an add-on service for a few dollars a month. Aftermarket geofence devices can run several hundred dollars.

For parents on a tighter budget, there is a low-tech option. Parents have begun slapping "how's my driving?" stickers with their phone numbers on the bumpers of their teens' cars.

"It could be that just having that phone number on a bumper sticker on it, on the back of a car, might give a teenager pause before they do something they shouldn't be doing," said Lachnit.

Some say these methods go too far, and invade the privacy of young drivers. But Loretta Worters, Vice President of the Insurance Information Institute, says it is all about safety.

"It's not a matter of not trusting them but a matter of improving their driving skills," said Worters.

Copyright 2013 Toledo News Now. All rights reserved.

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Parents make heartbreaking decision over son with autism

    Parents make heartbreaking decision over son with autism

    Wednesday, May 24 2017 11:10 AM EDT2017-05-24 15:10:16 GMT
    KMOV has chosen not to identify him by name or show pictures of what he currently looks like. (Credit: Wallens)KMOV has chosen not to identify him by name or show pictures of what he currently looks like. (Credit: Wallens)

    A parent's love knows no bounds. But what happens when you truly believe your child is going to harm himself or someone else? One family tells News 4 they made a heartbreaking decision about their son with autism, all because they felt they had no other options. 

    More >>

    A parent's love knows no bounds. But what happens when you truly believe your child is going to harm himself or someone else? One family tells News 4 they made a heartbreaking decision about their son with autism, all because they felt they had no other options. 

    More >>
  • Pregnant teen blocked from walking at graduation

    Pregnant teen blocked from walking at graduation

    Wednesday, May 24 2017 2:45 AM EDT2017-05-24 06:45:22 GMT
    Wednesday, May 24 2017 2:45 AM EDT2017-05-24 06:45:22 GMT

    The school principal says the student and her parents signed a covenant, vowing the teen wouldn’t have sex.

    More >>

    The school principal says the student and her parents signed a covenant, vowing the teen wouldn’t have sex.

    More >>
  • Breaking

    Kirbyville High School principal resigns, then shoots, kills self in parking lot

    Kirbyville High School principal resigns, then shoots, kills self in parking lot

    Wednesday, May 24 2017 11:31 AM EDT2017-05-24 15:31:33 GMT

    Following his resignation Tuesday afternoon, the principal of Kirbyville High School walked out his truck, where he apparently shot and killed himself, according to police.

    More >>

    Following his resignation Tuesday afternoon, the principal of Kirbyville High School walked out his truck, where he apparently shot and killed himself, according to police.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly