Dangers Of Car Surfing

Dangers Of Car Surfing http://learningcenter.statefarm.com/auto/teen-drivers/dangers-of-car-surfing/ bb3 Apr 13, 2011

By Jenny Li, Editor in Chief, State Farm™ Employee

Car Surfing is illegal, deadly and growing among teenagers and twenty-somethings.

What is it? It’s when a person drives between 20 to 40 miles per hour, then a passenger starts climbing up on the hood of the car as it’s moving, stands up and “surfs” the car.

Police incident reports show in some cases, drivers even “surfed” their own cars, meaning they climbed out of the vehicle they were driving as it was moving, and stood on the hood of the car without a driver. It’s also known as ghost riding or ghost riding the whip. Some car surfers will grab the bumper or door handle of a vehicle while on a skateboard or even while in a shopping cart.

An internet search of “car surfing” will lead you to numerous videos, many with them ending in accidents or “failures.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, since 1990 at least 99 people have died or sustained serious injuries as a result of this dangerous activity.

Once they’re behind the wheel, teens have ultimate responsibility for their behavior. But according to an October 2009 research report from State Farm® and The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia there are specific steps parents can take to influence their teen’s driving.

Set clear rules about driving; talk with kids about where they’re going and who they’re with; and make sure teens know the rules are in place because you care about them and their safety – not because you wish to control them. Maintain access to the car keys; this simple step naturally creates an opportunity for parents and teens to have conversations about where teens are going and who they’re with, as well as to review the family’s rules about driving.

CDC supports parents' efforts to keep teens safe on the road at all times. Overall, car crashes are the leading cause of death involving teens in the United States. Parents can play a key role in keeping their teens safe by learning about graduated driver licensing laws and ensuring that their teen driver follows the rules of the road.

For more information about teen driver safety and tools for new drivers, visit http://teendriving.statefarm.com
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