It’s summer in Los Angeles and that means school’s out and teen drivers are on the roads. Which also means more auto accidents. And, perhaps thanks to later curfews, more free time, and summer parties, the months between Memorial Day and Labor Day are the deadliest for drivers ages 15-20, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Teen drivers are generally not the best drivers for a number of reasons, including inexperience. Their lack of experience behind the wheel means they are more likely to get in auto accidents than drivers in other age groups (with seniors being a close second) and what’s even worse is these accidents are often fatal. Indeed, motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death for US teens. Read on for some sobering statistics about teen drivers and auto accidents:
- There are almost two times as many car accident deaths during the summer months than the rest of the year combined, according to the NHTSA Fatality Analysis Recording System.
- Teenagers are responsible for almost 50% more drunk driving accidents during the summer months than the rest of the year, according to the Washington Regional Alcohol Program.
- Over 100 drivers aged 16 and 17 are killed in both July and August each year, 20% more than other monthly teen car accident deaths, reports AAA.
If you or a loved one were injured in an auto accident caused by a teen driver, contact an experienced accident attorney to discuss your legal rights and potential for financial recovery.
As noted above, driver inexperience is the leading cause of crashes involving teen drivers. Contrary to popular belief, most accidents are not caused by teens who drive recklessly (although drag racing is a major safety issue in some parts of Los Angeles). Common teen driver errors include:
- lack of ”scanning” skill to assess the environment sufficiently while driving
- driving too fast for road conditions (not necessarily exceeding the speed limit)
- being distracted by something inside or outside of the vehicle (smartphones, friends)
This list is not exhaustive. Regardless of the reason for the accidents, if you were injured by a teen driver’s negligence, you have rights.
Drinking and Driving
Drinking and driving, or drugging and driving, is against the law in California and is especially risky behavior for teen drivers to engage in. But in summer months, the instances of teen drivers getting behind the wheel while drunk or stoned or high increase. Many of these drug and alcohol related accidents are fatal, and innocent lives are lost.
If you or a loved one was injured in an auto accident caused by a teen driver, contact the experienced attorneys at Ghozland Law Firm today to discuss your case.