Summer will be in Raleigh soon, and that means teenagers will be hitting the streets as they head out to their summer jobs or are simply cruising. This means it is a good time to discuss driver safety with your teens, as teens do not have the experience behind the wheel that older drivers have. This makes teens more prone to cause catastrophic motor vehicle accidents.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, car crashes are the second most cause of fatalities for teenagers in the U.S. In 2019, nearly 2,400 teens lost their lives and a further 258,000 suffered injuries that required emergency room treatment in auto accidents. Moreover, crash fatalities among teens in 2018 caused approximately $4.8 billion in medical costs and lost wages.
It is important for parents to have an honest conversation with their teens about driver safety. First, due to their ages teens simply do not have the same experience behind the wheel that older drivers do. Teens may not have the capacity to recognize dangerous situations on the road. In addition, teens are more apt to make critical decision errors that can lead to catastrophic accidents.
It is important to talk to your teen about distracted driving, particularly texting and driving. If you are texting and driving, you are visually distracted, physically distracted and cognitively distracted. According to one survey, 39% of high school student respondents reported that they had sent a text message or email at least once in the 30 days prior to the survey.
Even one drink can increase the chances your teen will cause a motor vehicle accident compared to older drivers. One survey reports that among high school respondents, 5.4% reported having driven after consuming alcohol at leas once within the previous 30 days. Moreover, 16.7% of high school students reported they were passengers in vehicles being driven by a driver with alcohol in their system within the previous 30 days.
It is important that teens understand how to safely conduct themselves while behind the wheel. This post is for educational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Those who want to learn more about motor vehicle accidents in Raleigh are encouraged to explore our firm's website for further information.