Got a teen behind the wheel? The statistics regarding teens and driving are frightening: car accidents are the leading cause of death among 15- to 20-year-olds. It's enough to make most parents want to wrap their teens in bubble wrap before they get out the door.
But sooner or later the time will come when you decide to hand over the keys. Most parents do so with at least some sort of lecture regarding keeping distractions to a minimum, focusing on the road, and keeping an eye on speed. But no matter how much you trust your child, I think we can all remember our teen years, when these promises were easier made than kept.
Fortunately, we live in a tech-driven age where the same gadgets that can distract our kids while driving can also be used to keep them safe. A number of new apps have emerged to help your teen keep the speed down, the phone quiet, and the distractions to a minimum.
Sprint Drive First: Download this app to your teen's Sprint phone and it will lock the phone when her car goes faster than 10 mph. Calls go directly to voicemail and texters are sent an automatic message to indicate that the recipient is driving. Three numbers can be programmed to circumvent the block in case of emergencies.
Speedbump: Sign up for Speedbump and for $10/month you'll receive updates on your teen's driving skills and patterns.
Teenage Speedster: This is my favorite app because it keeps your kid safe, even if they aren't behind the wheel. The app alerts parents if their teen is in a speeding car, whether they are the passenger or the driver.
Phoneguard Drive Safe: Blocks incoming texts and delivers a Google map to parents indicating the location and speed of the vehicle their teen is traveling in.