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Why Are Teens Prone to Car Accidents?

Posted on in Car Accident

Arlington Heights car accident lawyer teen driver

It is no surprise that many teens will be involved in a car accident at one point or another; however, these accidents are often more than just a fender bender. According to the CDC, 2,433 U.S. teens (aged 16-19) were killed in 2016 and 292,742 were treated in ERs across the nation for injuries caused by car crashes. Driver education classes are required by schools in an effort to reduce such injuries and fatalities. Despite this curriculum, young adults remain six times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than adults. In many cases, these accidents occur because of lapses in judgment that can be attributed to decisions made without much driving experience. A young driver’s inexperience can often lead to serious car accidents, resulting in significant injuries or even death. 

Common Risk Areas

There are a few safety measures that young drivers tend to ignore:

  1. Failing to Wear Seatbelts: Many teenagers refuse to wear seatbelts out of discomfort, laziness, or forgetfulness. For teens, the idea of wearing a seatbelt can seem unnecessary or annoying; however, many do not recognize that wearing a seatbelt can literally be the difference between life and death. 48 percent of teens who died in car accidents in 2016 were not wearing a seatbelt.

  2. Drinking and Driving: Teens may choose to drive while under the influence for a variety of reasons, including because they wish to avoid telling their parents that they have been drinking alcohol. While drunk driving is risky for anyone, it can be even more dangerous for those under 21, since their tolerance levels are low and unpredictable. The blood alcohol level that is acceptable for Illinois drivers under 21 is 0.00 percent, meaning that if a teen is caught driving with any alcohol in his or her system, he or she will face DUI charges. Many teens fail to recognize that they put other lives at risk in addition to their own by getting behind the wheel after drinking.

  3. Distracted Driving: New drivers are prone to distraction. The excitement that comes with the freedom to drive can take over, and the need to follow driving laws often falls by the wayside. To try to reduce the number of distractions, new drivers in Illinois have certain restrictions they must follow. Those between the ages of 16 and 17 cannot drive after 11 p.m. and can only have one passenger under the age of 20. All cell phone use behind the wheel is prohibited for those under 19, including hands-free devices.

Contact an Arlington Heights Car Accident Attorney

If you have been involved in a car accident, you should immediately seek legal representation to determine your options for receiving compensation for your damages. At Newland & Newland, LLP, we understand that being involved in a car accident with a minor can often result in legal complications, and we can help protect your rights as you seek the financial compensation you deserve. If you have been injured in a car accident in Illinois, contact an experienced Palatine personal injury attorney at 847-797-8000 for a free consultation.

Sources:

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/drivers/teen_driver_safety/gdl.html

https://www.teendriversource.org/teen-crash-risks-prevention/car-accident-prevention/basic-facts-about-teen-crashes

https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/teen_drivers/teendrivers_factsheet.html

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