Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among 15- to 20-year-olds in America. New teen drivers are three times as likely as adults to be involved in a deadly car accident, particularly during the summer months—when the average number of deadly teen driver crashes increases by 15%. Insurers occupy an ideal position to combat this trend and help young drivers adjust to independence on the road through quality online educational resources, teen driving programs and safety incentives. It behooves insurers to equip teens and parents with the necessary knowledge to avoid high-risk behaviors. Corporate Insight’s industry research service, P&C Insurance Monitor, tracks 19 leading property and casualty insurers. In our August 2018 monthly report, we analyzed teen driving resources on the public sites of 17 coverage group firms.
The data suggests that teen driving programs effectively reduce distracted driving and improve overall safety. According to Chubb, accident frequency dropped from 35% to 15% for 17- to 19-year-olds who used its Chubb at the Wheel app; teen drivers who checked the app at least four times a week were 26% safer than those who did not. American Family boasts similarly impressive results from users of its Teen Safe Driver program. Despite these encouraging statistics, we found that less than half (41%) of coverage group firms offer a dedicated teen driving program. As telematics programs improve and become more popular, firms that fail to leverage this technology for teens will be left behind.
Ultimately, it is parents who pay insurance premiums and purchase cars for their teens, and parental interest in teen driving programs is high. A study conducted by TrueMotion found that over three quarters (78%) of surveyed parents listed texting and driving as their top concern for their teens, but less than a quarter (17%) think that their insurance company does enough to combat this epidemic. Further, TrueMotion found that many respondents (54%) would likely switch insurance companies to access a teen safety or distracted driving program, compared to a small percentage (9%) of respondents who said they would not be interested. Informative resources are great ways for insurers to build long-term brand loyalty with both teens and their parents. Ahead of National Teen Driver Safety Week in late October, firms should leverage teen driving programs to attract new clients.