The accident statistics of teens (16-19) make them more likely to be involved in a car accident than the rest of the population. In addition, their accidents are three times more likely to involve fatalities than other drivers outside this age group. Why is this the case? Inexperience is certainly an important factor. Another is that teen drivers are easily distracted by peer group passengers. Yet another important contributing factor to the high teen fatality rate is they’re less inclined to use seat belts than older people.
Among teens as a group, males are less inclined to use seat belts than females, while passengers are less likely to buckle up than drivers. Without a seat belt, other car safety features do little to reduce the severity of injuries sustained in an accident. Energy absorbing crumple zones won’t prevent a driver or passenger from becoming projectiles within the car or from being ejected out of the car. The same is true of airbags, which are only effective when used in combination with a seat and shoulder belt.
Passengers in the back mistakenly think they’re safer because they’re farther from the front of the car and that the upholstery in front of them will provide protection. However, they’ll become airborne during high speed impacts and rollovers. Teen drivers are more prone to engage in risky behavior than the rest of the population. This includes speeding, distracted driving in all its forms, and allowing insufficient following distances. Drunk teen drivers are more likely to get into an accident than older people driving under the influence.
Sadly, car accidents are the main cause of teenage deaths. While all the above discussed factors contribute to teen car accidents, lack of seat belt use and speeding worsen their outcomes, which are often fatal. If you or someone close to you was injured in a car accident because of negligence or recklessness on the part of the other driver, our experienced lawyers can help. Contact us at Hogan Injury for a free initial consultation.