New Safety Feature Could Save Lives of Teenage Drivers and Passengers
Teen drivers have the lowest rate of seat belt use than any other age group of drivers, but if they don’t buckle up in certain new Chevrolet vehicles they won’t get out of the driveway.
Indeed, Chevrolet rolling out a new feature on certain 2020 vehicles called Buckle to Drive. The feature requires teenage drivers to put on their seat belts or the driver is unable to shift out of park for up to 20 seconds.
The vehicles equipped with this feature are the 2020 Chevrolet Traverse, Malibu and Colorado.
Parents of the teenager will have to set the vehicle to the Teen Driver mode.
The idea is to remind teenagers to buckle up every time they get behind the wheel, according to Chevrolet. Under the Teen Diver system the radio is muted until the driver and passenger seat belts are put on parents may also set limits for radio volume and maximum speed limits.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the leading cause of death for U.S. teenagers is motor vehicle collisions and contributing to this high death rate is the fact that teenagers have lower rates of seat belt use than all other age groups.
Chevrolet conducted a pilot study of a similar feature it offered to some fleet customers and based on its extensive research into the risks of not wearing a seat belt they developed this Buckle to Drive feature.
Seat Belt Facts:
- Wearing a seat belt is the best way to protect yourself in a crash. NHTSA
- Teens have lowest rates of seat belt use compared to other age groups. CDC
- Auto accidents are the number one cause of death for U.S. teens. CDC
- 2,433 teens in the United States ages 16-19 were killed in 2016; 292,742 were treated at ER after a vehicle collision. CDC
- Seat belts saved roughly 14,955 lives in 2017. NHTSA
- Roughly 47 percent of the 37,133 people killed in 2017 collisions were not wearing seat belts. NHTSA
So how does the Buckle to Drive mode work?
- The Buckle to Drive feature works only when the vehicle is in Teen Driver mode.
- If the teen turns on the vehicle and the driver’s seat belt is not buckled, the driver will not be able to shift out of park for up to 20 seconds. When the brake pedal is pressed, the driver will hear an audible alert and see a message in the driver information center that reads “Buckle seat belt to shift.”
- Chevrolet’s Teen Driver system with the Buckle to Drive is standard on the 2020 Chevrolet Traverse, Malibu and Colorado.
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