Fatal car crashes are a serious issue, especially for teen drivers. Accidents involving teens can be devastating to families and destroy lives.
According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2017, about 300,000 teens were treated in emergency rooms due to injuries sustained in car accidents and approximately 2,364 teens were killed. This means approximately six teens die every day due to car accidents, and it is a sobering statistic. What are some of the causes of teen car accidents? Read on to find out.
Teens who are new drivers may not have the same reaction time as older and more experienced drivers, especially in dangerous or unfamiliar situations. Inexperience can sometimes lead to accidents because a teen driver may not recognize the need to take action in certain situations. As new drivers gain experience and guidance, good driving habits form, reducing the risk to the driver and to others on the road.
Distracted driving is an increasing problem for teenagers as technology advances and becomes a part of everyday life. Distracted driving is any activity that takes your focus off the road, such as talking with passengers, changing the radio, eating or drinking and using a phone or GPS device. Driving requires concentration and full attention, and distractions may contribute to a teen driver taking his or her eyes and/or mind off the road.
At night when visibility is reduced, distracted driving is even more dangerous. Texting and driving has steadily increased over the years, as most teens in America own a smartphone and regularly communicate through texting and social media. Smartphones can be incredibly distracting while driving and may lead to car accidents.
According to some researchers, teen drivers are more likely to pull into traffic with less space, make illegal lane changes, maintain inadequate distance between cars, and drive at a high rate of speed.
Even when teens do pay attention to the road, they don’t always exhibit the safest driving behavior. This may include failing to allow enough space between cars or having a poor response to changing road conditions. Teens are generally impulsive and this coupled with inexperience can lead to an accident. Teen drivers gain experience by driving, and it takes many years for young drivers to gain this experience.
Driving under the influence is extremely dangerous at any age and can be especially dangerous for young, novice drivers who lack experience. In 2017, 15% of teen drivers were involved in fatal car accidents while under the influence of alcohol. Drinking alcohol under the age of 21 is illegal in all 50 States. Remember to lead by example, do not drink and drive with your teen in the car.
Seat belts are a proven way to reduce injuries and fatalities in car accidents, however, a seat belt has to be worn in order for it to work. Teenagers who choose to ignore seat belts put themselves in danger. Compared with other age groups, teens and young adults often have the lowest seat belt use rates, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Car accidents involving teen drivers are bound to happen despite the best preparations and planning to prevent them. However, there are ways to mitigate their impact. It’s important to teach your teen safe driving habits and to be a good role model while you are driving.
Reinforcing the rules of the road and the importance of buckling up can go a long way when it comes to keeping teens safe. It’s also important to teach your teen the importance of speaking up and not getting into a car with someone who has been drinking or using drugs.
At William Mattar Law Offices, our personal injury lawyers are here to help you after a car crash. If you sustained personal injuries as a result of a car accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Serving Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Albany, New York City, and Long Island. Call our car accident attorneys to file a claim today at 844-444-4444.