8 Danger Zones and the Risks of Teen Driver Accidents in California
There is a popular perception of teen drivers as risk takers who are dangerous behind the wheel, but scientific evidence does support this conclusion. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that car accidents are the leading cause of death for teens, at a rate of approximately six fatalities per day among those aged 16-19 years old. Some auto crashes may be due to another driver’s careless actions, but the CDC has pinpointed “8 Danger Zones” that tend to affect teens disproportionately compared to adults.
Fortunately, you do have rights as an injured victim regardless of the age of the negligent driver, and an Oakland car accident attorney can explain your remedies in more detail. Plus, whether you seek to protect yourself as a motorist or safeguard your teen, it is important to become familiar with the 8 Danger Zones.
- Less Experience: Teens simply do not have as much time behind the wheel, which is a factor that can only be improved through practice. Parents can do their part by setting aside time for doing ride-alongs in many different types of driving conditions.
- Distracted Driving: Texting, talking on the phone, engaging on social media, and related activities are popular among teens, so it is probably not a surprise to learn that distracted driving is a key danger zone.
- Teen Passengers: Another form of distraction for teens is interacting with other passengers around their age group. The younger driver may not be completely focused on operating the vehicle when he or she is talking, laughing, or singing along to music.
- Not Wearing a Seatbelt: Buckling up does not reduce the potential for accidents, but wearing a proper safety harness can prevent fatalities and lessen the severity of injuries. Seatbelt usage among teens is unfortunately lower than many other age groups.
- Nighttime Driving: The main issue with driving at night is reduced visibility, which affects motorists of all ages. However, when combined with the average teen driver’s lack of experience, the risk of vehicle crashes is heightened.
- Drowsy Driving: Long school days, extracurricular activities, and homework take their toll on teens, who may not know their bodies well enough to understand the impact of fatigue.
- Recklessness: At an age when they are trying to impress friends, teens may be tempted to tailgate other motorists, drag race, or engage in other forms of recklessness.
- Drunk or Drugged Driving: Though it is illegal for teens to drink, and unlawful for anyone to drink and drive, impairment is another danger zone. Intoxication is a factor in almost 1 in 5 fatal accidents involving teen drivers.
Contact Our Oakland Car Accident Lawyers for Legal Help
If you were hurt in any type of auto crash that was not your fault, it is important to reach out to a skilled attorney for assistance with your legal options. For more information, please contact the Oakland car accident attorneys at Venardi Zurada, LLP to set up a free consultation. We can meet with you at our offices to discuss the claims process.