The month of May was Teen Driving Awareness month. As a former teen driver who recalls at least a couple of dangerous situations where I was driving and now as a personal injury attorney who sees that the at-fault driver who caused a car crash often seems to be a person in their teens... I do not find it surprising when the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has a headline on their ‘Teen Driving' page that reads “Crashes Are Still the Leading Cause of Teen Deaths”.
According to the NHTSA, 3,255 teen drivers were involved in fatal crashes in 2017. Our firm has written about the different causes of motor vehicle crashes on multiple occasions and the harmful results that can stem from those different types of crashes. You can see some of those below:
seem to be the most consistent sins of the teen driver. When those aspects are coupled with immaturity, lack of practice, skills, and experience, and a tendency to speed and/or get distracted, driving becomes incredibly dangerous for a teen.
A resource that you might not have known about as the parent or loved one of a teen driver is:
- the Graduated Driver Licensing system, which aims to limit high risk driving situations for new drivers and you can read more about here.
Beyond that, and consistent with the NHTSA's recommendations, communicate with your teen about drug and alcohol use both generally, for their overall health and well-being, and in particular with respect to the dangers of driving under the influence.
Be aware that your teen is watching you drive when you are behind the wheel and drive accordingly and also set aside significant time to supplement the behind-the-wheel experience and teaching they are getting from others.
There is a wealth of information at the NHTSA ‘Teen Driving' page here.
The link to view the video in the Vancouver Police Department tweet pictured above can be found here.
Finally, to the extent this option is right for you and your teen, here is an article about the seven best teenage driving monitoring apps which take aim at minimizing distracted driving.
Some or all of these preventative measures can, in the end, prevent a teen driver from significantly impacting another person's life in a negative way. To the extent it could keep a teen driver from injuring or potentially killing another person or themselves in a motor vehicle crash involving one of their passengers, another vehicle, a bicyclist or pedestrian, or otherwise, making preventative efforts upfront is well worth it.