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III: Safe car the best way to keep teen drivers protected

Posted On Tue, May 21, 2013

With prom season here and Memorial Day just around the corner, automotive safety experts say that this begins the peak time for automotive accidents among teenage drivers, many of whom will shortly be out of school. And tragically, among 15-to-20-year-olds, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death in this age group, largely because they were either not buckled in at the time of the accident or were operating a vehicle that wasn't sufficiently safe due to the vehicle design or its age.

With this in mind, the Insurance Information Institute stresses the importance that parents make the selection of their teen's car primarily dependent on how safe it is to drive.

As much as teens may want to select a car that's stylish or has particular features, the best protection in the event of a crash is paramount. Thus, as a general rule, III says it's best to avoid vehicles that are small, which may not hold up well in an accident. Additionally, automotive companies may attempt to market certain vehicles by alluding to how fast they can go on the highway. These vehicles should also be avoided, as they promote recklessness.

Not only do safe cars protect the well-being of its occupants, but they can also result in lower auto insurance rates for policyholders. One vehicle that may combine low rates with stellar safety features is the Honda Civic, one of the most registered vehicles on the road today. According to the automaker, the 2013 model recently received top safety distinctions from both the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Art St. Cyr, vice president of product planning for Honda, indicated that safety ratings are fundamental to the company's philosophy with regards to product development.

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