Survey: PA Teens & Parents Demonstrate Dangerous Unawareness of the State's
Strengthened Teen Safe Driving Laws
Allstate findings indicate only 56% of teens, 36% of parents confident on GDL
MALVERN, Pa., Jan. 3, 2013
MALVERN, Pa., Jan. 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --A new survey released by Allstate
Insurance finds that many driving-age teenagers and parents of driving-age
teens in Pennsylvania need a much stronger understanding of the state's teen
driving safety laws. The findings also indicate that parents play the biggest
role in education and enforcement, but need to vastly improve in both efforts.
The survey, which was conducted by TRU, a leading youth research and insights
firm, was launched to mark the one-year anniversary of Pennsylvania's
strengthened Graduated Driver Licensing laws. The revised components, which
went into effect December 27, 2011, include:
o65 hours of supervised driving hours before licensure (including 10 hours
of night driving and five hours of inclement weather driving;
oPassenger limits for junior license holders with the exception of family
oA curfew for junior license holders between the hours of 11:00pm and
oAnd a mandatory six-month holding period following one's 16^th birthday
before eligibility to apply for a driver's license
Several responses among teens and parents alike support the need for both
groups – but especially parents – to develop deeper knowledge of
Pennsylvania's GDL laws:
o56 percent of teens claimed to be confident in their knowledge of
Pennsylvania's GDL laws; only 36 percent of parents reported the same
oThe majority of teens and parents were aware of three out of the four the
basic components of the law (supervised driving hours, passenger limits
and nighttime restrictions), but only about half were aware of the
mandatory holding period.
oWhen asked about the specifics of the four components, only 17% of parents
and 10% of teens could identify the correct restrictions.
The majority of teen respondents indicated that they value parental influence
in GDL education, but many are not confident about how well their parents know
o54% of teens say they have had a conversation with their parents about GDL
o73% of teens who had these conversations considered them to be effective
oOnly 54% of teens say their parents have a strong understanding of
Pennsylvania GDL laws
The survey also revealed that many teens are breaking GDL laws:
oOnly 38% of parents and only 15% of teens say young teen drivers generally
comply with GDL laws.
oNearly half (46%) of all Pennsylvania teens say they've broken at least
one GDL law ...but only 19% of parents are aware of these infractions.
oThe most common response teens gave for breaking GDL laws was "had an
Additionally, there are major contradictions between parents and teens
surveyed when it comes to enforcement:
o81% of parents say they enforce the GDL nighttime restrictions with their
teen (40% of teens disagree)
o77% of parents say they enforce the restrictions for passengers under age
18 in their teen's vehicle. (50% of teens disagree)
o76% of parents say they enforce the minimum number of supervised driving
hours with their teen (51% of teens disagree)
o70% of parents say they enforce the mandatory 6-month holding period
before applying for a license (45% of teens disagree)
Encouragingly, most parents (87%) and teens (80%) surveyed understand that GDL
laws save lives. More than three out of four teens (76%) also responded that
the desire to feel safe while they are driving is a strong motivator to comply
with their state's GDL laws.
"We know that Pennsylvania parents and teens don't want to put themselves,
their passengers or other motorists at risk," said Allstate Insurance
spokesperson Chris Conner. "But we also know that teens are our youngest, most
inexperienced drivers. We hope these survey results serve as a call to action
to parents to learn and enforce the state's GDL laws."
To learn more about Pennsylvania's GDL laws, please visit the Pennsylvania
Teen Safe Driving Coalition homepage. For more general information on GDL and
teen driving safety, please visit the Allstate Foundation Teen Driving
TRU conducted a total of 401 online interviews among teens ages 16-18 and
parents of teens ages 16-18, yielding a margin of error of +/-4.9 percentage
points. Interviews were conducted from October 13^th through October 30^th,
2012. Screening criteria was enforced to ensure that all teens/teens of
parents surveyed intended to acquire their learner's permit, junior driver's
license, or driver's license prior to their 18^th birthday.
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation's largest publicly held
personal lines insurer, serving approximately 16 million households through
its Allstate, Encompass, Esurance and Answer Financial brand names. Widely
known by its slogan "You're In Good Hands With Allstate^®," Allstate offers
insurance products (auto, home, life and retirement) and services through
Allstate agencies, independent agencies, and Allstate exclusive financial
representatives, as well as via www.allstate.com and 1-800 Allstate^®. As part
of Allstate's commitment to strengthen local communities, The Allstate
Foundation, Allstate employees, agency owners and the corporation provided $28
million in 2011 to thousands of nonprofit organizations and important causes
across the United States.
Contact: Chris Conner
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