Why Are Teenage Drivers Dangerous?
The number one cause of death for teenagers is motor vehicle accidents. For several reasons, teenage drivers are more dangerous than other driver age groups. Let’s look at the main reasons teen drivers are so hazardous for everyone on the road.
If a teen driving accident injured you or killed a loved one, you may be entitled to compensation. Our teen driving accident lawyers can help, and we do not charge you a fee unless we win you money. To get started with a FREE consultation, call us at (214) 305-8277 or contact us online today.
Why Teenagers Are So Dangerous While Driving
Even after teenagers receive their learners’ or driver’s licenses, they often lack the skill and experience needed to drive safely and prevent accidents. Parents should understand the risk factors for teen accidents and ensure their teenagers are fit to drive.
Here are some of the main reasons teen drivers pose a threat to everyone on the road.
Teen Driver Inexperience
Around three-fourths of severe teen driving accidents happen because of operator errors like:
- Driving too fast for road conditions
- Failing to look for and respond to hazards
- Being distracted by something inside or outside of the car
Many of these mistakes happen because of inexperience. Some assume that teen drivers tend to be more reckless and aggressive while driving. While that can be true in some instances, the vast majority of teen accidents happen because of incompetence.
Supervised practice can make a huge difference. Parents should make sure their teenagers are getting enough training time behind the wheel before allowing them to drive in risky areas, such as on high-traffic highways.
Although risky behavior is not the most common cause of teen accidents, it does play a part. Teenagers are more likely to exceed the speed limit and drive too closely behind other vehicles (also known as tailgating).
Speeding and tailgating make it harder for a teen driver to respond to hazards or other drivers and avoid an accident.
Most people are glued to their smartphones these days, and teens are no exception. Teenagers also fail to realize the severity of texting, talking, checking social media, or doing something else on their phone while driving.
Distracted driving is one of the most deadly forms of driving, especially for younger drivers. Distracted driving facts on teens show that:
- Almost 40% of high schoolers in 2017 said they had texted or emailed while driving within the past month.
- Teen drivers understand that using phones while driving is dangerous behavior, but they often do it anyway.
Alcohol Use While Driving
Research has shown that over half of teen drivers who died in car accidents had been under the influence of alcohol while driving. Since teen drivers are not legal enough to drink, they are engaging in these behaviors even though they are against the law.
Poor Seat Belt Use
Teen drivers are the least likely group of drivers to use seat belts. Wearing a seat belt helps prevent severe injuries or death during a teen driving accident.
Teen Driving Graduated Driver Licensing Laws
Most states have Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) laws to help teenagers become more experienced (and safer) drivers.
Each state GDL law varies slightly, but most have at least a minimum for requirements. GDL laws may help reduce the more prevalent behaviors in severe or deadly teen driving accidents.
Common Teen Driving Accident Injuries
Since teens are often involved in severe accidents, injuries tend to be severe. A victim of a teen driving accident might face any of the following injuries:
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Loss of limb
- Severe burns
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Emotional injuries
Unfortunately, many teen driving accidents also lead to wrongful death. If a teen driver injured you or killed a loved one, you should not have to bear the costs. The driver should be held responsible for their negligence, even if they are young.
What to Do if a Teen Driving Accident Injured You
If a teen driver caused your accident, you might be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, vehicle damage, and pain and suffering. To pursue recovery, you will need to file a personal injury claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
Teen drivers will typically still be on their parents’ auto insurance policy, so you’ll need to file a claim with that insurance company. Before you do that, here are some things we recommend you do.
Document the Scene
Take pictures of the accident scene, get the names and contact information for eyewitnesses, and do anything else to help set the scene.
Get Help for Anyone Who Needs It
If you or someone else involved in the accident needs emergency medical attention, call for an ambulance right away.
If you don’t receive medical treatment at the scene, see a doctor as soon as possible afterward. If you wait too long to get medical attention, the insurance company might doubt the severity of your injuries and try to reduce the value of your claim.
Keep Track of Your Damages
Save copies of all medical bills, vehicle repair quotes, receipts, evidence of missed work time, and any other losses you experience from the accident. You will need to prove your damages when you file your car accident claim.
Talk to a Teen Driving Accident Lawyer
Since teenage driving accidents tend to be severe, they are often complicated. A lawyer can help you with the legal side of things and ensure you seek the fullest compensation possible for your damages.
Get a Free, No-Risk Consultation with a Teen Driving Accident Lawyer Today
To get a FREE consultation with a teen driving accident attorney, contact our car accident law firm today. We do not charge you unless we win you a settlement or an award, and we’ll answer your questions during a FREE, no-risk consultation.
To get started with your FREE consultation, call us at (214) 305-8277 or contact us online today. Communication is what sets us apart from other law firms. We are here to listen and provide the legal expertise that you need after your accident.