In Reno, throughout Nevada and around the nation, there are many teens on the road. The number is multiplied in the summer. With that comes an enhanced risk of an auto accident. Since teens are not as experienced and are prone to making mistakes and committing dangerous actions, it is no surprise that so many crashes involve them. However, the problem is growing significantly worse as other dangers, such as distracted driving, become more prevalent.
A recent report by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety says that teens are at high risk, specifically in the summer from Memorial Day to Labor Day – also known as the “100 Deadliest Days.” The study shows that out of the approximately 700 annual injuries and fatalities that occur involving a teen driver, almost two out of three injure or kill someone other than the teen. In the summer, there is a 17% increase when compared to the rest of the year. Teens are said to be the group with the highest vulnerability of having an accident.
The statistics are from 2013 to 2017. They were released simultaneous to the beginning of the “100 Deadliest Days” to emphasize the point of how treacherous it can be to share the road with a teen driver and to encourage parents to teach their teens the rules of road safety. Teens who cause accidents tend to drink and drive, speed and drive while distracted. Despite teens not being legally allowed to drink alcohol, for every six accidents involving a teen during the summer, one had consumed alcohol.
Half of the drivers who took part in the survey said they had driven at excessive speed in a residential location over the previous month. 40% said they drove at excessive speed on the highway. 52% admitted they read a text message or an email while driving. 40% said they sent them while driving. Researchers used dashboard cameras they had installed to observe teen drivers and found that 58% had distraction as a factor in a crash.
While this information does not mean that drivers need to be terrified at the sight of a teen driver sharing the road with them, they should be cognizant of the inherent dangers teens pose. After an accident in which there are injuries and fatalities, it is imperative that those who were impacted understand the ramifications – medical costs, lost wages, the need to extended care, funeral expenses and more – so they can seek sufficient compensation with a potential personal injury legal action after car accidents.