Senator Bill Larkin (R-C, Cornwall-on-Hudson) is sponsoring a bill in the Senate designed to help reduce teen auto deaths by triggering a signal when a car is being driven unsafely. The bill (S.3375) would also give parents a reduction in their automobile insurance rates if they equip their vehicles with these approved safety monitoring devices.
The devices monitor vehicular speed, distance and direction traveled, acceleration and braking patterns and other safety indicators, and alert the parent or guardian of a minor when these safety practices are not being followed.
"Drivers under the age of 21 are almost five times more likely to be involved in fatal auto accidents than people between the ages of 30 and 69," said Senator Larkin. "In 2003, almost 6,000 teenagers died in auto accidents across the nation. In 2002, 41% of all teen deaths were caused by motor vehicle accidents. Giving parents the ability to immediately know the driving habits of their children should have a cooling effect on a teen's desire to drive recklessly. Another benefit to installing these tracking devices is the reduction in insurance rates for parents. But most importantly, they could ultimately save many lives."
Already existing automotive safety monitoring devices such as CarChip, DriveSafe, Real-Time Tracking, RS-lOOO Teen Driving System, SmartDriver, and TravelEyes 2 are proven systems that allow parents and guardians of minor drivers to monitor a youth's driving habits from the comfort of their homes.
The cost for installing these safety monitoring devices generally ranges from $140 to $500, plus a monthly service fee.
Larkin said the State Insurance Department estimates that the devices could reduce insurance rates for targeted populations by up to 25 percent.