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Study Shows New Drivers Lack Driving Skills; Everyone Says ‘Duh”

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Researchers at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (uncomfortably and vaguely worryingly abbreviated as “CHOP”) in the Center for Injury Research and Prevention and researchers from the University of Pennsylvania recently published their new study that concluded that young drivers are most likely to crash shortly after becoming licensed, when they don’t have much experience.

Shocking, we know.

Happy Teen, Terrified Mom

You can see it in the terror in that mother’s eyes

The study involved having new and more experienced drivers go through a 35-minute simulator driving assessment, which incorporated 22 variations of the most common ways teen drivers crash. 43% of teens who had only had their license for less than three months crashed at least once (for experienced drivers, that statistic was 29%).

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Some expressed surprise at this percentage, but it seems like a program designed specifically with ways that new drivers commonly crash would commonly cause new drivers to crash.

However, this study wasn’t just about telling the public the truth about teen drivers’ poor driving skills. Well, sort of.

“If we can identify driving skill deficits in a safe, simulated environment, then we can tell families and driving instructors what to focus on during supervised practice drives or help those with citations or crashes who are already licensed,” said Dr. Catherine McDonald, author of the study.

So, in other words, it’s not just about saying that teens are often involved in rear-end collisions –  one of the most common car crashes at 29% of all crashes, regardless of age – it’s also about telling new drivers exactly what they’re doing wrong so that they can work on it.

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Okay, we can get behind that.

Oops crash

That is, so long as “that” isn’t a teen driver