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What Teens Need to Know About Vehicle Maintenance and Equipment Failure

December 30, 2013 | Category: Automobile Accidents | Share

What Teens Need to Know About Vehicle Mantenance and Equipment Failure - Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.According to the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) over 22,000 teen drivers in 2012 were involved in  crashes in Florida; 41 were killed. It is estimated that approximately 7,000 of the 22,000 teen-driver crashes were the result of vehicle maintenance issues.

"There is more to just handing over keys to teens' first vehicles. Their lack of experience and familiarity with vehicle maintenance issues could result in accidents," said Lee County Accident Attorney, Randall Spivey of Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.

In a recent survey of parents with teen drivers, 66% of them revealed their teens had minimal to no knowledge of vehicle maintenance. recommends teens do the following:

  • Read the vehicle owner's manual - In addition to information on the features and operating parts of the vehicle, it will also have maintenance tips such as type of oil and tire pressure.

  • Check the car frequently - There are some easy visual inspections teens can do.  These inspections should include fluid levels, tire pressure, windshield wiper condition, operation of lights, etc.

  • Keep up with the routine maintenance - The vehicle's manufacturer has service recommendations.  They may be found in the owner's manual. These recommendations include checking the air filter condition, brakes, belts, spark plugs and fluids at regular intervals.

Safety experts recommend that parents of teen drivers provide access to roadside assistance services such as the American Automobile Association (AAA). Roadside assistance programs cover specific drivers, not the vehicle they are driving. Teen drivers should also know that roadside assistance programs are not permitted to provide service on interstate highways in Florida. These services are provided without charge by a volunteer group known as the Road Rangers.  The Road Rangers patrol the interstate highways on a 15 to 30-minute interval.  If service is required before the Road Rangers' next patrol, the teen driver can dial *FHP for immediate assistance.

Experts also recommend that parents share the responsibility of making sure the vehicles their teen drivers use are safe to operate. Particular emphasis should be on vehicles' tires as these tend to become more worn depending upon the driver's habits. 

Emergency situations do occur even when vehicle maintenance recommendations are followed. It is important to prepare ahead of time for these situations.  In addition to a fully-charged cell phone, recommends that teens keep the following in their vehicles:

  • A properly inflated spare tire and jack

  • Flares or reflective devices to alert other drivers of a breakdown

  • A flashlight (preferably a waterproof LED-type which is battery friendly)

  • A tool kit (can be travel size)

  • Jumper cables

  • A first-aid kit

  • An empty fuel container (Never carry extra fuel in the vehicle.  This is extremely hazardous.)


Personal Injury AttorneyRandall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one (1%) percent of Florida attorneys.  He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida.  For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact the Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at 239.337.7483 or toll free at 1.888.477.4839,or by email to  Visit for more information.  You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and in Collier County 239.793.7748.


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