Teenage drivers in the United States only make up a small percentage of
the total number of motorists on the roads, yet they are involved in a
disproportionately high number of
car accidents and car accident fatalities. The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety
(IIHS) has been tracking teenage driver fatalities for decades and the
results in recent years are both promising and alarming. The data they
have gathered warrants a closer look.
While the sheer number of motor vehicle teenage crash deaths has dropped
significantly since the early 80’s, it hasn’t dropped enough.
In fact, the number of young males who lost their lives in traffic collisions
actually rose between 2013 and 2014. Altogether, the number of teenage
traffic collision fatalities in 2014 was 2,623, compared to 9,633 all
the way back in 1977. The decrease in deaths is likely not indicative
of teenage drivers being more careful in today’s day and age but
instead a reflection of improved safety technology in vehicles. The National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that about 25%
of all car accidents are caused by
distraction and cellphone use, so the argument could be made that drivers –
of all ages – are less responsible and safety conscious today than ever.
Helping Prevent Teenage Car Accident Fatalities
In the mid-1990s, each state implemented driver’s permits to young
drivers that only allowed them to drive under certain conditions, such
as without passengers in the car and not after curfew. While the initiative
does seem to have helped reduce the number of teenage car accident fatalities,
the responsibility ultimately falls on everyone to ensure young drivers
are behaving responsibly. If you are the parent of a young teenage driver,
remember these tips and hints to help your child avoid a dangerous car accident.
Follow the leader: Teenagers learn by example, even if they often act disinterested in what
you do. Never use your cellphone while driving, especially when your child
is in the car with you. Not only do you create a high risk of a traffic
collision but you may also teach your child a reckless behavior that they
Two seater: The more passengers in a car, the more distracted the driver is likely
to become. Talk to your teenage son or daughter about limiting their passenger
count to just one, at least for the first year or so of their driving
Cell phones off: Teach your children to use their smartphones in their car like they do
in a movie theater: either completely off, or out of sight and out of
hand. You may even be able to find apps – depending on your child’s
make and model of cellphone – that disable text messaging features
while they are in a vehicle that is in motion.
New York City Car Accident Attorneys with 100+ Years of Experience
If you or your child are in a car accident, Lurie, Ilchert, MacDonnell
& Ryan LLP can help you file an injury claim. With more than 150 verdicts
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