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In-Car Cameras Keep Tabs on Teen Drivers

Car crashes are the No. 1 killer of teenagers. Safety experts are now asking if they can make teens drive more carefully by monitoring their cars with video cameras or other gadgets.

A company called DriveCam Video Systems already sells these cameras to trucking companies and limo services. The technology is designed to make drivers more careful by letting them know that someone is watching.

According to DriveCam employee Rusty Weiss, the in-car cameras had a similar effect on teen drivers when they were installed in cars in a study involving 11 Minnesota families. At first, the teens ignored the cameras. But videos of their driving continued to be sent to their parents, and over time, the teens became safer drivers.

But DriveCam isn't marketing to parents just yet. It's still unclear how much teenagers will resent the camera, and some parents don't want to play traffic cop.

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Nell Greenfieldboyce
Nell Greenfieldboyce is a NPR science correspondent.
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