Arizona Teen Driver Crashes Costly

AAA Insurance data reveal common causes for teen driver collisions

Phoenix, Oct. 21, 2013. With crashes being the leading cause of death among teens, AAA Arizona is releasing new data on teen crashes in honor of Teen Driver Safety Week, Oct. 20-26.

“Teens continue to have the highest crash rate of any age group, and rear-end collisions continue to be the No. 1 type of crash among both teens and adults,” said Brad Oltmans, vice president of insurance for AAA Arizona. “That’s why it’s critical that teens log a lot of supervised practice behind the wheel so they know how to react in various situations.”

AAA Insurance recently analyzed claims data for 15- to 19-year-old Arizona drivers from 2010 to 2012. The full-service insurance agency found the following to be the most common types of auto claims for Arizona teen drivers:

1.     Rear-ended the other party

2.     Insured not at fault

3.     Backed up unsafely

4.     Insured lost control

5.     Collided with a parked vehicle

6.     Failed to yield

“As a safety advocate, AAA Insurance urges parents to use evidence-based techniques, such as AAA’s StartSmart, that work with their teen drivers,” said Oltmans, noting that in Arizona, almost half of teen driver crashes (47.5 percent) in Arizona cost $3,000 or more. “These recommended coaching techniques may seem rather obvious, yet research findings show that parents aren’t regularly practicing these techniques.”

As a leader in driver safety, AAA offers a myriad of resources for teen drivers, including a new program and special event for parents and teens:

  • StartSmart Online Parent Session helps parents be more effective driving coaches. The two-hour program covers everything a parent needs to know, including a discussion about the situations and challenges they likely will experience while driving with their teens. The program is half-price ($9.95) during National Teen Driver Safety Week.
  • SMARTrek: New parents/teen customers to AAA Insurance can get a GPS device that shows where your teen is at as well as online information about how they are driving in real time. See your agent for more details.
  • AAA Arizona is sponsoring a fun educational event for teens and their parents from 2 to 4 p.m. Oct. 26 at Jester’Z Comedy Club in Scottsdale. Called Mission IMPROVable, the event will feature the club’s improv troupe to bring the driver education experience to life for teens and their parents.

AAA also offers Permit Prep 101, a free, 90-minute workshop for teens and parents that goes over rules of the road, statistics and the graduated driver license. And Driver-ZED is a computer-based DVD software program that helps novice drivers (teens) recognize and avoid driving hazards.

AAA Insurance is an advocate for the safety and security of the motoring public. For more information, visit

AAA Arizona, the Arizona affiliate of AAA, provides automotive, insurance and auto travel services to more than 840,000 Arizona members. Annually, AAA’s Roadside Assistance responds to more than 450,000 calls for help on Arizona roadways. The auto club also provides discounts and financial services to AAA members. Since its founding in 1927, AAA Arizona has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers.