Parent-Teen Dialogue on Traffic Safety Can Prevent Teen Car Accidents


June 19, 2012

Summer is here which means no school and lots of fun for teens, but it also marks the most dangerous time of year for teen drivers. Seven of the ten deadliest driving days for teen drivers are between Memorial Day and Labor Day. The summer period constitutes the hundred days with the most fatal car accidents involving teen drivers. This is not a statistical anomaly but a predictable result of having inexperienced drivers traveling more miles. Parents also tend to be more lax about allowing their kids to use the car during the summer months. The increased risk to teen drivers makes it important for parents to discuss safe driving practices with their kids.

One of the biggest factors in teen driving accidents during the summer months is the higher frequency of teen drivers transporting passengers. There is a direct correlation between the number of passengers in the vehicle with a teen driver and the risk of the driver being involved in a fatal accident according to Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. The risk of fatality to an inexperienced teen driver age 16-17 is 3.5 times greater when transporting teen passengers. The extent of the risk also increases with the number of passengers in the vehicle.

Studies have shown that teenagers respond positively to conversations with parents about the risk of car accidents. Parents may be able to reduce the risk of their child being involved in a serious Atlanta car accident or Georgia Car accident by discussing a number of high risk teen crash factors including:

Transportation of Passengers: Most graduated driver’s license laws prohibit a new teen driver from transporting other teens because the distraction of having other teens in the car substantially increases the risk of a collision. Parents should advise their children both against being a passenger in another teen’s car and being a driver who transports other teens.

Teen Risk-Taking: Risk-taking behavior plays a role in many teen accidents and can be addressed by talking to your kids. When drivers speed, run traffic signals, tailgate or operate vehicles while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the likelihood of a fatal crash increases dramatically. Inexperienced teen drivers tend to have an inflated sense of self-confidence in their driving ability.

Seat Belts: Seat belts are extremely effective at reducing or preventing injuries in traffic collisions. Accident data reveals that 63 percent of those killed in traffic accidents are not wearing seat belts. It has been estimated that seat belts save almost 10,000 lives per year. Unfortunately, teenage males aged 16-25 are the least likely to buckle up.

While it is easy as a parent of a teen to think that conversations about motor vehicle safety may be met with indifference by their kids, a recent study by AAA confirms that kids whose parents discuss these issues with their children are in fewer car accidents. Some parents even enter into a driving contract with their kids who agree to follow certain rules in exchange for driving privileges.

If your child is injured in a car accident, our experienced Georgia auto accident attorneys provide compassionate and aggressive legal representation to our clients. Our teen driving accident lawyers are available to assist clients throughout all of Georgia and the Southeast, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state. No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.

Category: Auto Accidents

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