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 are often faced with decisions risk taking 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 how to recognize and manage risk, and make healthy choices. Adults can help teenagers learn how to manage risk by letting them try new things and making sure they understand how to stay safe. It is also important that adults model smart risk-taking for teenagers.
The AHS Provincial Injury Prevention Program (PIPP) supports a smart risk approach to youth injury prevention. The approach recognizes that risk is a part of life, and while not all risks can be eliminated, most can be managed. Taking smart risk means recognizing the risks of an activity and choosing to manage them to prevent injuries.