Letting your children head out on the open road alone is an enormous exercise in trust. Not just in their ability as drivers, but also in the vehicles protecting them. Not every car is created equal, so make sure you know what they’re getting themselves into.
Kentucky is the most dangerous state in the country for teenage drivers. Young drivers here are 140% more likely to perish in a car accident than average, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Keeping your children safe behind the wheel could depend on what wheel they’re holding.
While a thorough education can be crucial in protecting new drivers, the car they drive could also make a big difference. The NHTSA rates vehicles on how effective they are at protecting occupants by looking at essential factors like front and side crash tests.
Combing through all the available safety options can seem daunting, but the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) looks to help in the process. They use the NHTSA ratings, along with other determiners, to single out a few affordable selections from the top of the charts:
- Mazda 3 sedan
- Kia Forte
- Subaru Legacy
- Volkswagen Jetta
- Buick Encore
- Toyota Corolla
- Volvo S60
These cars were all selected on a few important distinctions. The vehicles must earn good ratings for front, side and roof strength, and for restraints. Braking distance and emergency handling must also meet certain qualifications to merit consideration.
It can be hard to know if you’ve done everything to keep your children safe when they’re driving on their own. A reliable automobile is a good head start and can works wonders when paired with a solid driver’s education and proper licensing. Make sure you know what makes for a safe ride, and you can rest easy when your kids grab for the keys.