Teen Driver Fatalities Highest in Summer Months

For many young people, summer months represent freedom and fun times with friends. Few teens stop to think about the dangers they are facing when they are out on the roads. Many think that driving during the summer is safer because the weather is nicer. However, a statement from safety organizations released in June 2013 reported that the summer months are the deadliest time of the year for teen drivers.

Seven Deadly Days

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons and the American Automobile Association teamed together to sponsor a safety campaign called "Decide to Drive" because of the high number of teen auto accident injuries and fatalities that occur during June, July and August. According to previous research undertaken by AAA, seven of the 10 deadliest driving days for teens occur between Memorial Day and Labor Day. AAA reported that an average of 422 teens die in auto accidents in the summer months, compared to an average of 363 motor vehicle accident fatalities per month during the rest of the year.

Many of those auto accident fatalities are attributable to distracted driving, according to safety organizations. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that 10 percent of injury-causing motor vehicle accidents in 2011 were a result of distracted driving. The NHTSA also reported that 11 percent of drivers under 20 years old involved in fatal auto accidents were distracted when the accident happened.

Safe Driving Tips for Teens

AAA and AAOS have collected some tips for teens to follow to eliminate distractions and help ensure safer summer driving. Before even starting their vehicles, drivers should:

  • Fasten safety belts and adjust mirrors
  • Enter addresses into G.P.S. devices if needed
  • Adjust sunglasses and cellphone earpieces
  • Set the stereo to the proper volume and select the CD, mp3 list or radio station.

While driving, people should do their best to avoid distractions, including:

  • Eating or drinking
  • Grooming
  • Making phone calls
  • Checking or sending emails or text messages.

Seek Legal Assistance

Teens have less experience behind the wheel than older drivers, and many do not have the skills to avoid accidents in emergency situations that older drivers often have. When teens are distracted behind the wheel, the likelihood of an accident increases even more. All drivers who are distracted and cause accidents should be held liable for the damage they cause. If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident caused by a distracted driver, talk to an experienced auto accident attorney with a history of success in handling these complicated cases.

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