10/22/2007

As I watch the late night news I hear another horrible story of some local teens who died in a tragic car accident on their way home from a late night school event. I begin to cringe at the thought of losing a child. As my 9 year old daughter lay safely asleep in her bed, my husband and I begin to talk about our options when she is a teen driver. Before I tell you what choice we came up with let me just give you some statistics that ABC news reported. According to a study done earlier in the year, ABC news stated that 90 percent of teens said friends in the car distracted the driver. 89 percent of teens said their friends used cell phones while they drove. 79 percent of teens said passengers or the driver danced and sang in the car. 20 percent of ninth- through 11th-graders have been involved in at least one crash as a passenger in the last year.
These statistics are alarming. I agree that teens need to socialize, but there is a time and place for everything, and driving in a car is not the time or place. We all know that driving is a task that requires a persons undivided attention. When there are too many people talking to each other and talking on cell phones the driver has a higher chance of being distracted and being in a terrible accident. So you ask, what is a parent to do? Teens need a vehicle. Well, you are right, teens do need a little bit of freedom and responsibility, but who says teens need a car?
My husband is an ASE certified automotive technician, and he came up with a great idea for our daughter. He said that our daughters first vehicle will be a small truck with only two seats and a standard transmission, or what many of us know as a "stick shift". I nearly jumped for joy. Not only are small trucks affordable they are economical. Small trucks are gas savers and are a lot less costly to insure than the sports car your teen is probably asking for.
As any one who has ever driven a standard transmission vehicle knows, these types of vehicles require an enormous amount of concentration, and best of all require the use of both hands. Two handed driving means no hands available for talking on that beloved cell phone. Two seats means that there is no room for groups of teens to just jump in ready for a joy ride. Sure there are cars that have two seats and save gas like hybrids, but I don't think that my pocket book can afford a first car like this.
You should also look into an insurance policy for your teens new ride, you can go to http://www.advantageautoquotes.com/ for an easy way to find the right kind of insurance for your family. Make sure you research the insurance before you purchase it. Insurance companies like advantage auto quotes.com offer many types of insurance policies that are customized to fit all types of autos and drivers. Advantage offers competitive prices for your particular policy. When looking for insurance for your teen try looking up, teen driver auto policy by www.advantageautoquotes.com/.
Another thing you may also want to know is that standard transmissions are also more affordable than the automatic transmission when its time to buy or repair. Standard transmissions are easier to repair, they don't have all the high tech computer technology involved which makes for an easier fix for the mechanic. The time saved on fixing a standard transmission results in money saved for the consumer.
So, as you search for the perfect vehicle and insurance for your teen, I hope you consider the small truck. I know what my daughter will be driving when she gets older. What will your child be driving, and more importantly will they be safe?

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