During California's Teen Safe Driving Week, the issue of texting and driving causing California car accident injuries came up again and again in newspaper articles, blogs, and seminars held at schools across the state.

Yet unfortunately, the attorneys in our Southern California car accident injury firm see these types of tragic cases almost on a daily basis. Injuries ranging from broken and fractured bones to severe traumatic brain injuries are a result of inattentive teens using their cells phones while behind the wheel.

As new drivers, teens may be unaware of the seriousness of distracted driving. Studies have shown that at the new driving age, teens' brains are still developing. Therefore, reasoning and decision-making skills may not be complete.

That is why it is imperative that parents talk to their kids about the dangers of distracted driving, including texting while behind the wheel. Here are some issues that need to be discussed before hitting the road:

- Distracted driving is not limited to texting and driving. Loud music, too many people in the car, and eating or drinking behind the wheel all have the same effect.

- Don't use your cell phone while driving. This should be a given, since it is illegal to talk on your phone while driving in the state of California. However, it cannot be stressed enough. If a call really needs to be made or answered, then find a safe, well-lit place to pull over.

- Know where you are and where you are going at all times, and make sure your parents do, too. Accidents can happen anywhere, and to anyone. Being familiar with your surroundings and having your family aware of your route can make all the difference in your well-being if you are involved in one.

- Don't speed. Besides the fact that it is against the law, speeding is one of the leading causes of drivers losing control of their cars in California.

- Cars are potentially dangerous, heavy machines. This also means that they are difficult to stop quickly, so keep your distance when travelling behind other cars to avoid rear-end accidents.

Institute these rules and talk to your kids about driving safely before they are even old enough to get their drivers' licenses. Set up a safe driving contract with your teen driver, and establish and stick to consequences if the rules of the contract are broken. Doing so just might prevent an accident.

Need help talking to your teen about distracted driving? Order your free copy of our book, Distracted Teen Driving - A Guide and Contract for Parents, by contacting our experienced attorneys at Steinberg immediately. Just call 1-800-350-8888 today. Need help because you've been injured in a distracted driving car accident in Southern California? Fill out our online form, and tell us about your case. Someone will get back to you immediately.
Peter Steinberg
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Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney Since 1982
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