Teen Driver Accidents
Car accidents are the second leading cause of death for teenagers in the United States. In 2019, approximately 258,000 people between ages 13 and 19 were treated in hospitals for injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident, and 2,400 were killed. It is frightening to think that, on average, seven teenagers die in motor vehicle crashes per day.
The teen drivers most at risk of being involved in a motor vehicle crash are those who drive with other teen passengers, newly-licensed teenagers, and male drivers between the ages of 16 to 19. As teen driver injury attorneys, Kirakosian Law has helped hundreds of families and handled many cases involving collisions that teenage drivers caused.
A wreck involving a teenage driver could lead to high medical expenses. In some cases, the driver’s parents could be held responsible for their teen driver if they are sued for damages beyond what is covered in their auto insurance policy.
How much will working with Kirakosian Law cost?
A lot of parents and teenage drivers hold off on hiring a personal injury attorney because they are afraid of the high cost of representation. At Kirakosian Law, we work on a contingency fee basis. This means that in order for us to get paid, we must win for you. We get paid a percentage of the award that we win for you, so contact us for your free case evaluation today.
What are the leading causes of teenage driving accidents?
Inexperience is the leading cause of accidents among teen drivers, with their first year being the most dangerous. Experienced drivers, such as their parents, take for granted that they know how to handle their car in the rain, how fast to take a turn, how much room to leave in front of them and another vehicle, or how to check properly before changing lanes. Therefore, it is advised that parents either teach their children or hire a professional to take teen drivers on the highway and other roads to gain more experience behind the wheel and be safer.
Unfortunately, drinking and driving is a very common unsafe behavior among teenagers. To make matters worse, when teenagers are drinking and driving, they are often also speeding or not wearing a seatbelt.
Speeding is another top cause of fatal crashes and injuries among teen drivers. When teenagers are speeding, they have a shorter distance between themselves and other drivers and are less capable of reacting properly. As a result, speeding was involved in more fatal crashes among teen drivers than any other age group.
Distracted driving, particularly texting while driving, is another reason why teenagers are more likely to get in a crash than other drivers who are not texting. Kirakosian Law recommends shutting off notifications on your phone while driving and reiterating the importance of not texting while driving to your teenager.
What should teenagers do after being involved in an accident?
It’s essential to review what steps your teenager should take if they are involved in an accident. First, they must ask if anyone was hurt in their vehicle or the other vehicles involved. Next, they should call 911 to have police and first responders arrive to treat any injured victims. If necessary, get the car out of the way of traffic to ensure safety. Finally, make sure that your teenager exchanges the following information with the other driver:
- Insurance information and policy number
- The driver’s license number
- Email address
- Phone number
It’s important to tell your teenager that they should never give out their Social Security number. Instead, they should ask to see the other driver’s insurance card and not just take their word for it that they have insurance.
Teenagers should also take pictures and record important information on their phones, including their location, the weather conditions, the make and model of the other car, and images of all injuries and damage.
Keeping Teens Safe on the Road
If you are a parent who wants to help your teenager to become a safe driver and prevent the risk of a car crash, then here are some tips you can share:
- Wear a seatbelt. Of the teenagers aged 16 to 19 who died in passenger vehicle crashes in 2019, 48% of them were not wearing a seatbelt. Seatbelts have been proven to reduce fatalities and injuries.
- Say no to drugs and alcohol. Teenagers are not allowed to drink because they are under age 21. Drinking and driving is very dangerous, but there could be additional penalties for a teenager driving under the influence.
- Practice driving with your teenager often. Spend more time supervising your teenager driving in high-risk conditions. It can increase their confidence and knowledge behind the wheel and improve their ability to react calmly to road conditions. Driving can be frightening, and weather, obstacles in the road, and heavy rush-hour traffic on the highway make it even more dangerous. The more practice your teenager has while under your supervision, the better.