Automobile accidents are the number one cause of death among teens in America, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Teen drivers account for only five percent of all drivers nationwide, but they were involved in 13 percent of accidents.
These are tough statistics for parents of teen drivers to hear, but they are a component in emphasizing the importance of safe driving among teens so they can avoid having an auto collision and becoming a statistic.
Learning from the Numbers
Studies and records are released every year to provide an overall concept for parents, driving instructors, and any other adults who work with teens to focus on improving. If you are the parent of a teen driver, take into account these three factors related to teens in auto collisions:
- Approximately half of fatal collisions involving teens occur on Friday nights, between 6:00 p.m. on Friday and 3:00 a.m. on Saturday.
- Almost half of the fatal collisions involving teens are caused by drinking and driving.
- Speeding is the cause of 25 percent of all accidents involving teens.
As parents talk to their teens about safe driving, they should keep in mind Friday nights, underage drinking, and speeding. Naturally, parents want their children to have fun with friends on the weekends, but any parent wants their child to come home safely.
While statistics show that teens are at a higher risk of being involved in a serious car accident when they are having fun with friends on the weekend, there are a few other factors that put teens at risk for having an accident and being injured. These are factors that can be prevented with ongoing education and talks with teens.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, teens have the lowest use among any other age group for wearing a seat belt. In 2013, only 55 percent of high school students surveyed reported wearing a seat belt when riding with someone else. Teens are also more likely to underestimate driving hazards due to lack of driving experience.
Parents should have a conversation with their teen driver and make sure the teen is aware of any driving hazards that cause crashes such as distractions, being drowsy, reckless driving, and driving under the influence.
Our team at ProCare Automotive and Collision has performed auto body repairs on vehicles from collisions involving teen drivers. We are here to help if an accident does happen, but with many of our employees who are parents of teens, it is our hope that all of the teens in our community drive safe on the roads.