As relatively new drivers, teenagers are not entirely aware of the dangers of the road. Since they have a tendency to engage in reckless behavior, such as speeding or getting distracted, teenage drivers are significant at risk to suffer serious or fatal injuries in car accidents.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), car accidents are the leading cause of death for teens in the United States. In 2015, 2,333 teens (ages 16 – 19) were killed and 221, 313 suffered injuries that required emergency medical treatment.
So before you hand over the keys to your teenager, take a look at the common causes of teenage auto accidents:
- Distracted driving – According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, distraction was a key factor in 58 percent of collisions involving teenage drivers. 56 percent of teens admit to talking on cellphones while driving and 34 percent admit that they send and respond to text messages while driving. Distracted driving also involves talking with other passengers, listening to music loudly, or other behaviors.
- Lack of seat belt use – Teenagers are the age group that are least likely to wear seat belts, especially as passengers. More than half of teen passengers killed in crashes were not wearing seatbelts at the time of the collision.
- Having too many people in the car – The risk for teen car accidents increases with each additional teenage passenger in the vehicle. Teen drivers often become more distracted the higher the occupancy of the car.
- Inexperienced driving techniques – Teens possess a lesser ability to recognize or anticipate danger compared to older adults. They often speed, tailgate, or drive recklessly, which are all recipes for disaster.
- Driving under the influence – Approximately one-fourth of teen drivers who died in car accidents had a BAC over .08.
If you suffered an injury caused by a negligent driver in Florida, contact our Dunedin personal injury attorney at Paulsen Law Group today.