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Why Teen Drivers Crash

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2015, 2,333 teens between the ages of 16 and 19 were killed in motor vehicle crashes and another 221,313 were treated in emergency departments. Out of any age group, teenagers are least likely to buckle up, despite being most at risk for accidents. What makes teenage drivers so susceptible to accidents? If you have a teen driver in your household, the answer to this question is of particular importance to you. Continue reading to find out why teens crash at a higher rate than adults.

1. Distractions: We tend to only think of cell phone use when we consider distractions on the road, but the fact is that there are several types of distractions. Talking to passengers, grooming, eating and drinking, and using a mobile device are all forms of distracted driving. Using a hands-free device is just as dangerous as a handheld one, so impress the importance of saving calls and texts for later, when it is safe. Multitasking is dangerous for drivers of all ages, and even more so for young ones who have slower reaction times due to inexperience.

2. Speeding: According to the National Young Driver Survey (NYDS), teens generally define speeding as going at least 10 miles an hour above the speed limit. However, going even a couple of miles an hour over the speed limit is considered speeding and is dangerous, particularly for young drivers. It increases the distance required to stop your car in time and, if someone suddenly brakes in front of them, it is a recipe for disaster. In serious crashes where teen driver error was the cause, 21% resulted from speeding too fast for road conditions.

3. Driving at night: Driving at night tends to be more dangerous for any driver due to a lack of visibility. Teens are especially more likely to crash at night than they are during the day. In the dark, they have less time to see and react to signs on the road, upcoming curves, cars swerving into their lane, a pedestrian crossing the street, or any other road landmark or obstacle. That is why it is crucial for drivers to slow down and exercise more caution, which is something more experienced drivers are aware of. Teenage drivers lack the practice and experience necessary for safer nighttime driving.

4. Seat belt usage: Teenagers and young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 have the lowest seat belt use out of any other age group, making them more susceptible to severe or fatal injuries caused by car accidents. Seat belt use can actually decrease the risk of serious motor vehicle accidents by about 50%. In some states, not wearing a seat belt is a secondary offense, which means a police officer cannot stop a driver for not wearing a seat belt, though he or she can cite it as a secondary violation if the driver committed a primary offense like speeding. In states where not wearing a seat belt constitutes a primary offense, teen drivers were 12% more likely to wear them and passengers were 15% more likely to buckle up.

As parents, it is crucial to set a good example for teenage drivers in your household. Practice safe driving habits for them to follow and emphasize the importance of treating this great privilege with the respect it deserves.

Woodstock Car Accident Attorneys

The impact of a car accident can reverberate throughout not only the injured victim’s life, but the lives of an entire family, leaving them traumatized. Some injuries are so severe that victims are often faced with mounting medical bills, lost wages, or even the loss of the ability to return to work. If you were injured in an accident due to someone else’s negligence, you might be eligible to receive compensation through the liable party’s insurance company or with a lawsuit against the culpable driver.

At The Warlick Firm, PC, our Woodstock personal injury attorneys are dedicated to representing injured victims and have successfully recovered millions of dollars on behalf of our clients. With a proven track record and reputation as a fierce legal advocate, you can be confident in our ability to serve you.

Get started on your case today and contact our firm at (678) 321-4088 to schedule a free consultation.