Parents may not be the best role models for young drivers, according to a new survey of teenagers from Liberty Mutual Insurance and Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD).
Two-thirds of teens say their parents live by different driving rules than the ones they expect their kids to follow.
Here's what parents and teens are up to behind the wheel, as reported by 1,700 surveyed junior and senior high school students:
- Talk on a cell phone while driving: 91 percent of parents, 90 percent of teens
- Speed: 88 percent of parents, 94 percent of teens
- Text while driving: 59 percent of parents, 78 percent of teens
- Drive without a seat belt: 47 percent of parents, 33 percent of teens
- Drive under the influence of alcohol: 20 percent of parents, 15 percent of teens
- Drive under the influence of marijuana: 7 percent of parents, 16 percent of teens
Kids have been observing their parents' driving habits since they were big enough to see over the dashboard, Dave Melton, a Liberty Mutual Insurance driving safety expert, said in a press statement.
"You may think you only occasionally read a text at a stop light or take the odd 30-second phone call, but kids are seeing that in a different way," he said. "Answering your phone once while driving, even if only for a few seconds, legitimizes the action for your children and they will, in turn, see that as acceptable behavior.''
The insurer and SADD encourage parents and teens to consider signing a parent-teen driving contract to spark conversation about safety issues and spell out family driving rules.