Auto accidents are the second leading cause of death for teenagers – with about seven Americans aged 13 to 19 losing their lives each day. In fact, teen drivers (aged 16 to 19) are almost three times more likely than adult drivers to be involved in a fatal car crash. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, male teens aged 16 and 17 are the most at-risk group.
Here at West Law Firm, our car crash attorneys are committed to keeping Berkeley County residents safe on the roadways. We’re not only attorneys, but parents, too – so these statistics hit particularly close to home. The positive news, however, is that the number of teen driver fatalities is slowly decreasing. 2010 to 2019 saw a 28% decline among 15- to 18-year-olds.
Our experienced auto accident lawyers have compiled a list of tips to help parents keep their kids safe behind the wheel. Check them out below:
- Practice, practice, practice.Driver’s education programs are a great way for teens to log hours behind the wheel. Whether your child is enrolled in private classes or those offered by their school, extra practice is always helpful. Driving with your child will also help you determine if they are ready to drive on their own.
- Drive home the dangers of cell phone use.Talk to your teen about the potentially fatal results of texting and driving. Make sure they understand that even glancing at their phone – whether they are reading a text, taking a call or checking GPS directions – could cause a serious accident.
- Set a good example.When you are in the car with your teen, make sure that you are following all the rules of the road, avoiding distractions and wearing your seat belt. All in all, practice what you preach!
- Limit passengers.Some parents opt for a no-friends rule when their teen first starts driving on their own, while others limit the number of passengers. The decision is ultimately up to you, but bear in mind that the more passengers, the more distraction.
- Prohibit nighttime driving.Because teens are four times more likely to die in an auto accident at night, it is wise to limit driving in the dark – at least until you are confident that your teen is prepared.
- Discuss defensive driving.Remind your teen that, while they may be doing everything right, they must remain vigilant for drivers who are not. Keeping their eyes and attention on the road increases reaction time and could prevent a car accident.
- Remind your teen about seatbelt safety.If your teen consistently buckles up, wearing their seat belt will become a habit for life.
If you or your teen driver were involved in a car accident, contact West Law Firm today. Our auto accident attorneys will work to hold the at-fault driver accountable, and to get your family the compensation they deserve.
Call 843-376-6189 or click here to get in touch!