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October 23, 2013

It’s “Teen Driver Safety Week,” and the state is urging parents to carefully monitor their teen drivers. There were 113,000 motor vehicle injuries to drivers 20 years and younger between 2008 and 2012. During the same period, there were 216 motor vehicle fatalities to those between the ages of 17 and 20.

Among the recommendations for parents is to take a safety class called "Share the Keys," 90 minutes of training in community settings. Parents are counseled to control the keys: Teens that had to ask for permission to drive were half as likely to be involved in crashes as those with primary access.

The program also notes that 40 percent of crashes occur after 9 p.m. and teens with just one passenger have nearly twice the risk of a fatal crash than those who drive alone. It also stresses that teens are at greatest risk in the first one to two years of driving, so parents should fit in at least one hour of practice a week with their children in order to increase their experience

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