Motor Vehicle Safety

Injury Prevention & Safety

Motor vehicle injuries are the leading cause of unintentional injury for youth in Alberta. Crash rates are especially high during the first year of unsupervised driving. Research shows that teenagers have fewer crashes when there are limits on their unsupervised driving that are gradually relaxed as they gain driving experience.

Teenagers face many different traffic situations once they get their driver’s license and start to drive. They need to make a number of driving decisions, but their ability to assess risks and future consequences is not fully developed. To prevent dangerous risk-taking and injuries, it is essential that youth learn to manage driving risks slowly and practice making safe choices.  Adults can help teenagers learn how to manage risk by letting them try new skills and making sure they understand how to stay safe. Parents are role models for teen passengers in their vehicle.

Key Messages

Take these important safety precautions every time you drive:

  • Always wear a seat belt. They save lives and prevent injuries.
  • Be in complete control when driving, with no drugs or alcohol in your system.
  • Focus only on driving and don’t do anything else. Alberta's distracted driving law tells drivers not to do things such as text, read, or use hand-held cell phones while driving.
  • Manage your speed; follow speed limits.
  • The Parent Teen Driving Agreement is a great tool to help create a dialogue and keep teens accountable to their parents.
  • Teen Risk-Taking – tips for parents can help you find ways to talk to your teen about a variety of risky situations they might face