According to HealthDay, teen drivers distracted by passengers’ loud talking and fooling around are more likely to be involved in serious incidents than those distracted by technology such as cell phones.
“Forty-three states currently restrict newly licensed drivers from having more than one young passenger in their vehicle,” Robert Foss, senior research scientist at the University of North Carolina’s Highway Safety Research Center, said in a university news release.
“The results of this study illustrate the importance of such restrictions, which increase the safety of drivers, their passengers and others on the road by reducing the potential chaos that novice drivers experience,” added Foss, also director of the Center for the Study of Young Drivers.
He and a colleague mounted cameras in the vehicles of 52 teens and recorded their driving habits and behaviors for more than six months. The teens were monitored when they had parents and other teens in the car, and when they were alone.